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When you’re a woman in a man’s world, it can be hard to gain respect and build a successful business. Whether you’re a career woman in the corporate world or a stay-at-home mom, there always seems to be a gender gap.
But with a little hard work and believing in yourself, you can survive and thrive as a successful female entrepreneur. Below are the qualities you need to possess to make it.
1. Believe in yourself and your mission
This is one of the most important qualities for a woman in business to gain. You need to have confidence in yourself and in your business, whether it’s a fantastic product or an excellent service.
Once you believe in yourself and your mission, other people will be positively impacted by your passion.
How to build up your confidence:
- Choose work that inspires you
- Turn your passion or hobby into a career
- Find another successful businesswoman who inspires you
- Don’t do it for the money
- Know your worth
Every female entrepreneur has something to offer and should be paid accordingly. Don’t sell yourself or your business short by cutting corners, which includes asking to be paid what you’re skills are worth.
2. Cultivate your marketable skills
Women in general have lots of marketable business skills, like communication skills, management skills, social skills and the list goes on. Spend a little time to cultivate your skills and learn to make some serious money with them.
How to increase your skills:
- Take an online class or a course at your local college
- Read books or blogs within your field, and take notes from their experience
- Mentor, teach or tutor others (nothing makes you an expert like teaching)
Once you believe in yourself and your mission, the increase in skills will easily follow. Experiment within your area of expertise by opening an Etsy shop, Amazon store or rent a booth at your local trade show.
This will give you the ability to test the waters before diving in, so you can see what skills you need to develop more.
3. Manage your time effectively
We are constantly juggling family responsibilities, household chores, long check lists and financial decisions on a daily basis. When it comes to managing multiple projects, women are some of the best people for the job. Some of us like to use the latest apps or technology to increase productivity, while others enjoy the old fashion paper to-do list.
How to manage your time better:
- Simplify multi-tasking by focusing on one thing at a time
- Divide your work into categories, like urgent/now, current, weekly and monthly
- Write. It. Down. and take lots of notes
- Set an alarm or reminder just in case
Ladies let’s face it, we all think we’ll remember everything, but that’s one of our biggest mistakes. We take on too much, we rely on our (already overloaded) minds and don’t set enough reminders.
Your brain will be so much more clear and organized once you write everything down, and get it out of your head.
4. Prepare your mindset
Working as an entrepreneur has it’s hardships, but add in being a female and it can become even more difficult. One of the best ways to combat this, is to prepare your attitude and mindset before you begin.
Respect yourself and others will do the same. Know your worth and other people will see it too. Be positive in your thinking and don’t let your mind belittle your skills and talents.
You can do this!
How to stay positive:
- Join like-minded groups or small networks
- If you’re unhappy or don’t like something – change it (don’t settle)
- Create a stable support system with friends and family
While learning to survive and thrive in the business world, you need to know it won’t be easy. But when you pour your heart and soul into a business it can be very rewarding. No matter what, it’s imperative to believe in yourself, your mission and your skills.
5. Increase your financial savvy
An article I read recently from USA Today caught my eye, because it said that women’s financial power grows faster than their savvy.
As a woman who runs my own online business and as someone who interacts with other female entrepreneurs, I found this kind of alarming.
Even though women make up the majority of college graduates, are nearly half the work force and are the primary earners in many households, most of them remain out of the loop when it comes to talking with their partner about managing money.
What I’m wondering is, how can women be effectively successful in the workplace and running their own businesses, if they aren’t properly educated about the financial stuff?
To help solve this problem, here are three ways to increase your financial savvy as a female entrepreneur.
6. Don’t be afraid to ask
I am a firm believer in the whole “knowledge is power” and the best way to do that is to educate yourself. I actually learned this lesson myself this past week.
But before you can become financially savvy, you have to realize that you have a problem, and come to grips with the fact that it’s not okay to dig your head into the sand about your financial issues.
Your business and your future are at stake here ladies!
Start by reaching out to a financial advisor, or start reading blogs, books and other resources that can help empower you with the confidence you need.
Thanks to Genworth Financial, there are some excellent resources and financial advisors available to help you get started on your journey to becoming more financially savvy.
If you’re lucky enough to find someone who’s had experience with something you’re facing, or is an expert in a certain area, take advantage of their expertise. Don’t be afraid to ask for help!
7. Find the right tools
For most men and women, managing your money and following a budget isn’t something you think is fun, but it’s a vital part of becoming financially savvy.
In reality, tracking your money can actually be a fun experience, if you have the right tools! With the vast amount of tools at our fingertips, thanks to the internet, there’s no shortage of resources out there.
And you might just learn something new about yourself in the process. Maybe you’ll find out you have a love for spreadsheets, a digital geek who likes to work with mobile apps, or you’re an old fashioned pen-and-paper kind of girl.
Whatever your preferred method, finding the right tools could make all the difference between financial success or failure.
8. Surround yourself with like-minded people
One of my biggest goals for this year is to connect with people on a one-on-one basis. In order to make that happen, I have to go outside my comfort zone and invest the time it takes to network with other like-minded entrepreneurs.
“You are the sum of the average of the five people you spend the most time with.” – Jim Rohn
If you surround yourself with financially savvy men and women, that’s what you’ll start to become. And likewise, if you surround yourself with people who are careless with their money, their behavior will influence you too.
There are a two key types of support your like-minded peers can offer:
- Emotional support. Sometimes you just need someone to share in your success, or pick you up when you’re feeling down. The right kind of peers can give you that shoulder to cry on, or a comforting pat on the back.
- Practical support. Most business goals require time, energy and physical resources. Fellow entrepreneurs can offer help in practical ways like connecting you with a knowledgeable colleague or recommending a good resource.
So be careful who you surround yourself with, find the right tools to keep you motivated and don’t be afraid to ask for help.
You don’t have to have a master of science in management to start your own business, but the knowledge gained could certainly help in the decision making along the way.
What are your tips for making it as a female entrepreneur?