Sponsored by Neela Seenandan:
It seems like every week the news is profiling a new entrepreneurial success and with increasing frequency those stories are about women. Like so many other areas of the business world, entrepreneurship is no longer simply a man’s game. In fact, a 2016 study on global entrepreneurs showed that women in the field were “more ambitious and successful” than their male counterparts. This should serve as both a challenge and inspiration to other women seeking to be successful business owners.
While the business culture continues to change for the better in terms of equal treatment for women, there are still inherent challenges. Women face sexism, pay disparity, and other difficulties when compared to men in the business world. However, there are more and more women rising above these challenges to be wildly successful entrepreneurs. If you are a woman starting your own company or looking for inspiration in your career, there are many resources out there to help.
Join Uplifting Communities
The business world can be tough and discouraging, especially for those just starting out with small companies. One way to navigate successfully through the challenges is to join a helpful, supportive community. There are many different options out there and with the level of connectivity provided by the internet, online communities are a great resource. When you join a community, whether it’s in your local region or an online group with members from around the world, you can get support, helpful tips, and encouragement to inspire your success.
To get the most out of a support community or organization, the best thing to do is join and get involved. This may feel like a large commitment that is taking away time spent on your business, but there are numerous benefits to being involved. With any company, especially a small business, one vital key to success is networking. When you are actively involved in a women’s entrepreneurship organization, you can meet and form relationships with countless people who could support and help your business.
Working with other women passionate about entrepreneurship and women’s success can help you be inspired when you start to feel burned out. You can learn new ways to pursue success and find resources you may not have known about previously. It’s also important to give back to the community. You should be a part of an organization not just for your own benefit, but to help out other women. Some programs offer mentorship or student programs, so you can find many ways to give back to the community.
Find Financial Resources
When you are just starting out, adequate funding is paramount to your success. Fortunately, there are numerous resources to help you out, beyond simply dipping into your savings or finding a small business loan. There are several grants out there available to women-owned businesses. Additionally, some support organizations and communities offer scholarship programs to women entrepreneurs. Seeking funding from an organization also automatically connects you with a community of women striving to help and support businesswomen such as yourself.
When you are looking for funding, you can also take steps to secure finances yourself. If you have friends or family members who believe in your idea, you can ask them for financial support. Another option is a private grant or scholarship, which can be an invaluable resource. You can also consider seeking funding by using a site such as Kickstarter, which not only helps financially, but also in giving exposure to your brand and creating an instant group of clients.
Research and Learn From Successful Professional Women
Perhaps one of the greatest resources for new women entrepreneurs is the example and inspiration provided by successful women in business. Not only can women learn by researching stories and methods of success, but some successful women dedicate their time to passing on their knowledge to other women. Neela Seenandan uses her own successful career in executive-level human resources to provide leadership and advice for other women searching for success.
There are also several other resources for researching successful women. Many business and financial magazines publish lists of successful women, and the internet is a great tool for researching those stories. You can learn so much by reading about how other women overcame challenges, pushed the system and found innovative ways to make their businesses successful.
While there are still some challenges, the future is bright for women in business. Many entrepreneur support organizations and communities offer special resources to women. Joining a community of entrepreneurs, especially one that is focused on women, is a great way to learn new strategies to grow your business and give back to a community that supports you. You can even participate in a mentorship program, first as a mentee and later on, you can pass on your knowledge to the next generation of women.
Organizations often provide financial resources for women as well such as grants or scholarships. You can also potentially find funding through friends and family, or by using an online funding tool. Finally, one of the best ways to encourage your own success is to learn from other successful women. Researching successful business women can help you learn what to do and also provide an important source of inspiration for you to pursue your dream.