You may have heard the phrase: “Anyone can be an entrepreneur!” Well allow me to play myth buster. That is simply not true. Ladies, entrepreneurship is for a special type of woman (a crazy one) with a special set of skills (bravery and persistence).
Not every woman has the makings of an entrepreneur extraordinaire, but with the following principles in the back pocket of your Buckle denim, you might have a solid shot.
So what exactly do you need pull it together successfully as a female entrepreneur?
You Need the Right Mindset
I’ve found that starting a business (online or offline) is like taking a ride on Colossus. Colossus is a multi-looping rollercoaster made up of ten inversions. That means the coaster turns you upside down and right side up ten times in a minute and 45 seconds. If that sounds like a good time to you, entrepreneurship may be your thing.
Except when you’re a young female entrepreneur, the experience is a whole lot more emotional. If you are not equipped with the right mindset, you will end up with a whole lot more than whiplash.
This is something I am still learning. I can’t help that my emotions are so closely tied to what I do. I love what I do. And if I write a blog post that fairs poorly in public opinion, although I’ve learned to take the constructive criticism and improve, my feelings still get hurt.
If I acquire a new client whose business I worked my butt off to earn, I feel invincible. And when I see my pipeline for work getting lean, I feel the urge to panic pushing itself upon me. It’s the nature of the game. To win, you have to master your mindset.
I’m no self-help guru (although if you saw my self-help library you’d think I’d be one by now). But I can tell you that to succeed as a female entrepreneur you will need a healthy and unshakable self-image. You will need the ability to use the power of positive thinking daily. And you will need a good old dose of determination to see you through.
If you want to become a female entrepreneur, get your mind right.
You Need to Face Reality
If you are pursuing or considering pursuing entrepreneurship you obviously have a vision or a dream in your heart. That is awesome. Hold fast to it. Nurture it. But don’t let it get in the way of your capacity to face reality.
Know what you want, and know what you are really up against. Determine the obstacles you face and take steps toward demolishing them one at a time. And I really mean one at a time. For some, myself included, bulldozing obstacles en masse just creates massive amounts of anxiety. Take it day-by-day. Don’t worry if you’re not moving as quickly as you want to, if you’re goal oriented, you’ll always feel that way. Just be nice to yourself. And remember until you get to it, that obstacle will be there for you to crush tomorrow.
Do your best to assess circumstances, realistically. Yes, it does feel like your world is crashing down around you at times. So if it makes you feel better Chicken Little, go run little circles in your kitchen yelling “the sky is falling, the sky is falling.” Then, take a deep breath and get back to the task at hand.
Whatever just went wrong, I promise you it’s not as bad as it seems. And if you don’t believe me, just take five minutes to think of the millions of people around the world that have it a million times worse than you do every single day of their lives. That will put things in perspective.
Get your ideas, thoughts, and plans out into the real world. There is a very small likelihood someone will steal your idea and beat you to it. For the most part, people are horrible at getting stuff done. If you’re paranoid, talk to people you trust. Just don’t go down a rabbit hole only to end up in wonderland. If you start with the wrong idea you will end up with the wrong solution. At which point, you’ll be looking for the reset button on your business.
You Need to Harness the Power of Imagination
Creative ideas solve problems. Solving problems makes you money. When you can become a problem solver, you become indispensable. Strive to find ways to translate that indispensability to your products and services.
Always look for ways to provide value (which is the textbook phrase for helping people by making a positive contribution). By exposing yourself to a variety of experiences you will fuel your creative energy. And once you’ve got your creative juices flowing, you can use them to create wonderful experiences for your clients.
Most of all get involved in community. There is power in numbers, and the collective knowledge of a group is always greater than any one individual. You never know where that must-have answer may come from, so exposing yourself to credible sources of information and knowledge is essential to your success.
You Need to Pimp those God-Given Skills that Lead to Successful Businesses
Use your bull-dogged determination! That is a God-given skill? Yes. I mean hello, we were designed to give birth for crying out loud. Whether you have children or not is of no consequence. The sheer fact that you are design push a large watermelon sized object through an orifice originally 2.5 centimeters wide speaks to the fact that you were born with bull-dogged determination deep down inside you. It’s time to stir it up.
Work that gift of gab! Use your intuitively supreme female communication skills to your advantage. Communicate remarkably and consistently with your customers, your support staff, and your team. Never let there be any confusion about what you are trying to accomplish, promote, or sell. This is how you market your business effectively. Don’t be afraid to use your personal charm and charisma to effectively carry out your entrepreneurial motives. In the words of Rupaul, work it girl!
You Need to Consider All the Other Stuff Too
This list is not meant to be exhaustive or exclusive. There is much more to consider before deciding if entrepreneurship is for you. Hopefully these points will help you figure out if your one step closer to entrepreneurship, or ten steps away. Either way, this is by no means a checklist to determine whether or not you can hack it as a female entrepreneur. You have to follow your heart and do what is best for you. Unfortunately, there is no checklist for that.
That said you also want to remember that if you’re pursuing entrepreneurship you’ve got to:
- stay motivated,
- get inspired,
- become unstoppable,
- learn handle the kinks in the journey,
- implement corrective measures along the way,
- make good decisions (that’s a loaded one),
- put your resources to good use (don’t reinvent the wheel if you don’t have to),
- find a mentor (or your ideal female entrepreneur to stalk on the Internet),
- be a doer(without execution, you’ve got nothing),
- maintain character (your success depends on whether or not you can be trusted), and above all
- develop a bold vision for yourself (you are capable of accomplishing considerably more than you realize).
What else can you add to the list? What skills or talents have you found useful in your pursuit of female entrepreneurship? If you could give only one golden nugget of advice, what would it be? Leave a comment, let me know!