I have always been entrepreneurial. I love the challenge of taking something that, until now, was just an idea, and turning it into something concrete. Something that can sustain my family, my life and the way I want to live.
As someone who turned a new project into a 6-figure business within six months, I went through a lot of ups and downs, and I would like to share some of my insights with you.
A lot of it is to do with attitude – I firmly believe that if you change your attitude, you change your life. So the first thing I’m going to share is…Believe in yourself
Self-belief is important in life but especially in business. Entrepreneurship is not one easy “rise to the top” formula – there are lows and there are difficulties – setbacks you couldn’t foresee.
It is important to maintain confidence and believe that the rocky journey is worth it, because the world needs your positive impact. The women who start businesses are usually strong and help make the world a better place.
As Theodore Roosevelt said “Believe you can and you're halfway there”. Don’t be afraid…to fail
Failing is part of life - you have to move outside your comfort zone. Learning this particular lesson was something that helped me greatly in my own entrepreneurial journey.
“Success consists of going from failure to failure without loss of enthusiasm!” Winston Churchill.
No one wants to “fail” but in an entrepreneurial sense, it means not being afraid to take a risk and if that decision turns out to be, well, not the best, then mitigate the fall-out and move on.
Don’t let “failure” affect your confidence – it is a part of your future success – learn from it. ….and ask for help!
Many new business owners are afraid to ask for help because they think it makes them look weak or that they don’t know what they are doing. Having now been in business for six years, I wish I had asked for more help in the early days.
As you navigate through your business journey, you will encounter resources that can help you, ranging from a capital injection to knowledge, and everything in between. Figure out what you need at each stage and go for it.
Feedback is also critical to your business in its early stages - ask everyone including family and friends. It is often the most unlikely people that will give you the insight you are looking for! Ask people you meet in person at networking events, and in Facebook and LinkedIn groups.Network like there’s no tomorrow!
As you start to find your feet as a new business owner, you will realise that you cannot do it alone. This is when you need to conquer your shyness and get out there and network like there’s no tomorrow!
Selling yourself can be hard, especially if you are not an overly forthright person, but the amount of collaboration and connections that can be gained by a large but close network is invaluable – and of course networks, nowadays, are online as well as offline.
You will meet a lot of doubters and people who do not “get” your vision - avoid these people and move on to conversations with people that do inspire you to move forward!Keep learning
I never stop learning in my business and that’s what keeps it exciting. We all know that the key to growth, innovation and success is knowledge and nowadays, there is no excuse not to learn.
If you don't like reading – or don’t have time - try audio books while you are exercising or in the car. There are also many online classes, tutorials and webinars available, as well as mastermind and continuing education classes at your local university or TAFE College.
Mentoring is a fantastic thing as well, and if you can find someone you admire who is prepared to mentor you, then that is a gift. One day, you will be able to return the favour for someone else.Become an expert in your field
It is far better to be an expert in your niche - and be really good at what you do – than to have a scatter-gun approach to business.
This point goes back to the one above – keep learning. But nowadays, we can share our knowledge in so many ways and gain exposure for our business at the same time.
We can do that through speaking at events where our target audience is in attendance, using public relations strategies and tactics (including social media) and blogging (including guest blogging).
The aim is to be as visible as possible - from YouTube to TV and podcasts – while showcasing your expertise and knowledge with authenticity and passion.Support
And lastly, make the most of the many support groups out there for female entrepreneurs – there are literally dozens, both online and offline.
I indulge in a mix of both, enjoying the face-to-face contact and socialising of in-person networking but also gaining efficiencies from online groups and forums. It’s important you don’t get “stuck in your own head” online or overwhelmed by the amount of information on the web.
Learning from the success and failures of others – as in real people – is a great reality check!
Until next time!
Bec C Collier – Empowering Women to be More
Those are just some of my tips for setting out on your entrepreneurial journey – and it is a journey – you never stop learning, or trying new things (and being prepared to fail!). If you would like to know more about my business and how I got to where I am, email me - email@example.com