Entrepreneurship is very appealing to women in leadership. You get to be your own boss and the challenges of building your own business can be exciting. Is entrepreneurship something that you have considered? Perhaps the idea of working for yourself sounds appealing, but you don’t know where to begin. Maybe you’ve worked a full-time job all of your life and are afraid of what working on your own might mean. Here are some things to consider as you think about entrepreneurship.
1) Get your spouse’s support: Starting your own business will take a lot of mental and physical stamina. You will work long hours and will likely spend many days and nights away from home networking, marketing and building your business from the ground up. Be sure to discuss what entrepreneurship will mean with your spouse and get his/her buy-in. Having your spouse’s support and partnership as you take on a new endeavor will provide you with the extra fuel that you need when the going gets tough.
2) Get your financial house in order: Entrepreneurship is rewarding, but also very risky. In fact, many small businesses spend more than they make the first year of business. Before you take the plunge, work to clear your consumer debt and create a nest-egg that you will be able to rely on. Perhaps you want to cut back on your hours at work to ensure that you still have some steady income and health benefits while you develop your small business.
3) Plan and prepare: According to the Small Business Administration, 50% of small businesses fail within the first year. One of the primary reasons they fail is lack of planning and preparation. Take the time to get advice from the Small Business Administration or local economic development corporation. You may even decide to invest in a business coach who can help you develop a solid business plan and marketing strategy.
4) Stay focused: Entrepreneurship requires self-motivation, stamina, persistence and focus. You will need to program your mind for success. In order to do so, surround yourself with other like minded individuals. Join your local Chamber of Commerce or join a mastermind group. Both will offer you the opportunity to network with other entrepreneurs who can share in your experience, provide helpful advice and even offer strategic partnership opportunities.
There is a lot to consider before becoming an entrepreneur, but if you plan and prepare it can be extremely rewarding and fulfilling.
Ellie Nieves is a women's leadership speaker. Through her keynote presentations, breakouts, retreats and workshops she helps women to develop leadership skills, set strategic goals, bolster effectiveness and create a personal brand. For more information visit www.EllieNieves.com or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
© 2009 by Ellie Nieves. All rights reserved. Reprints must include byline, contact information and copyright.