Want the secret to starting your own successful small business? Well, you're in luck!
After starting two businesses and running a non-profit for a year - I've learned a thing or two when it comes to starting your own small business. It can be scary (it sometimes still is for me, even years later!) and a lot of it is "fake it till you make it" in the beginning days, but hang in there - it can get better!
Here are 5 tips to make it as a women-owned small business:
1. Take the Leap! You’ll never be “prepared” to make the leap – so just do it! One of the scariest things wasn’t when I went out on my own with a partner, it was when my husband and I set out on our own and both of our incomes were tied to bringing in new clients and setting up our business correctly. I’m admittedly pretty risk-averse by my personality alone – ADD or ADHD people tend to be this way. However, my husband (rightly) was much more concerned about how we were going to make it – especially those first few months. He wasn’t ready, and now admits he never would have been, but we took the leap and will never go back to having bosses.
2. Set Firm Boundaries and learn to say no if it doesn’t serve you or your new business – you don’t have time for that! You’ve got your own business now. As a small business, especially as a women in business, you will be taken (or they’ll at least attempt) advantage of you and your situation. Push back – demand that what’s written in your contract is adhered to – and ALWAYS have a contract, even if the job is small. It will help you “hold” your boundaries, but you’ll also have the legal backup.
3. Take *Calculated Risks. By *Calculated, I mean that you can educate yourself and by using your own yearly audits, forecasting reports, and marketing/industry reports - do something before anyone else in your field! Now, its you against the world – literally. You’ve got to learn to feel comfortable not knowing everything and take leaps of faith. Some of them will work out and some won’t, which brings me to my next point.
4. Learn From Failure. Not every idea is a huge hit – but if you do fail, that doesn’t mean you have to give up. Kendra Scott, one of the world’s youngest female Billionaires, first started her business not in jewelry but in hats! But, from her hat business failing, she saw her jewelry profits start to rise and she saw an opportunity, which she jumped on. Now, she is literally one of the most famous and wealthy women in business in anyindustry.
5. Positive Visualization. Your mind truly is a powerful weapon – and it can be used on your behalf or against yourself. Visualize positive things happening, map out your goals and visualize how to get there. Set SMART (specific, measurable, attainable, relevant, timeline) goals so you can accomplish them in a timely manner. SMART goals will allow you to measure not only the quantity of work output, but also are you meeting deadlines? Are you on track for next quarter? If not, what do you need to do to get there? SMART goals answer all of these questions for you.