The gender gap regarding small business ownership is changing and changing fast. While business was once seen as a ‘man’s profession,’ today more and more women are starting their own companies and taking a dip in the entrepreneurial pool. In fact, statistics from 2016 show that there are 11.3 million women-owned businesses, making up 38 percent of the business population. According to the 2016 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, “Since 2007, there have been 1,072 net new women-owned firms launched each and every day.”
Of course, women do face their own specific challenges when trying to bring their business ideas to life, but fortunately, there are more resources geared to supporting their unique needs. One such example, is Business Boutique, a company (and upcoming book!) started by Christy Wright, whose mission is to help more women make money doing what they love. Recently I invited Christy to my podcast so we could chat about women entrepreneurs and how they can overcome their fears in starting their own business.
5 Pain Points for Women Entrepreneurs
In Christy’s experience, there are five main pain points that most women in business struggle with:
1. The Business Plan
Many people want to go out and make it up as they go, but to be successful, you must have a plan.
2. Financial Knowledge
Some financial issues that women struggle with are how to price products/services, how to pay themselves, how to talk about their price in a confident way, and how to budget.
3. Marketing and Sales
Many women have had a negative experience with sales in the past, and it has burned them into thinking that ‘sales’ is a bad thing. However, sales are crucial to success! Women can benefit from learning how to reframe sales, including how to sell in a way that is authentic and makes them feel proud, not pushy.
4. Business Basics
Many women entrepreneurs don’t have a business background, so they are intimidated by basics such as legal issues, taxes, trademarks, copyrights, etc.
5. Life Balance and Time Management
Women who wear a lot of hats are pulled in many directions and must figure out the optimal way to manage time.
The good thing is that these are all things you can LEARN! And when you do, it sets you free to win.
The Biggest Confidence Booster: Success
Knowledge is the key to empowering female small business owners, and you can get that knowledge through countless free and paid resources, both online and local. But from Christy’s experience, the biggest confidence booster is typically your own success.
The thing is, women define success differently – not only from men but from each other too. In her work with Business Boutique, Christy says she ‘walks with’ each woman, step by step, to take them to the next level of success, whatever that is to them. For some, it might be opening a third store location. For others, it could be making enough money to send your son to soccer camp. Whatever the definition of success, Christy watches as something happens to women as they reach their goals.
Here is how she describes it:
In the end, it is that initial move that makes all the difference – pushing through your fears and starting your own business because you CAN reach any level of success you strive for. Some of Christy’s most memorable quotes from the interview are about fear itself. Namely that “the antidote to fear is action,” and “fear doesn’t mean you’re doing something bad, it means you’re doing something bold.”
Christy shares more knowledge in the full interview, which I can best describe as a genuinely inspirational and encouraging interview for all female entrepreneurs. She also shares tips for men who want to better support the female business owner in their lives. Click the Play button above. You’ll be glad you did.