Here’s a fascinating fact.
In a Kleinwort Benson survey featuring 500 participants, it was found that female entrepreneurs were statistically less likely to fail in business than their male counterparts. Intriguing, eh?
However, the same survey found that women are more likely tofearfailure when starting an enterprise. Despite the fact that equality has come on in leaps and bounds in recent years, women are still apprehensive when striking out in business.
Of course, fear should never stand in the way of a truly brilliant business idea – and the large numbers of successful female entrepreneurs across the UK prove that, when it comes to running a company, gender is no obstacle. Here’s the inspirational things we’ve learned from some of the world’s finest businesswomen.
Secrets of Success from Female Entrepreneurs
- Be adaptable.
As Martha Stewart, founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia and successful US businesswoman so succinctly states: “When you’re through changing; you’re through.” Your company will continue to evolve, year on year, and the key to success is having the flexibility to adapt to shifting trends, fresh obstacles, and new opportunities.
- Don’t set a limit.
It’s good to establish firm goals as part of your business plan. However, if you set yourself a final target, you could be inadvertently limiting your own success. Take it from Sarah Tremellen, founder of Bravissimo, who approached her business with no idea of how far it would go. She says: “I never saw a ceiling for it, I just thought it would be fun, setting up from scratch and making something from nothing.”
It’s advisable to keep an eye on the competition. You may even find inspiration in what others are doing. But the only way you’ll achieve remarkable success is to stand out firmly from the crowd. Identify a customer need that hasn’t been satisfied yet. Think of ways that you can offer something bigger, better and more inspirational than other companies. Anita Roddick, founder of The Body Shop, is a firm believer in doing things differently. She says: “Be daring, be first, be different, be just.”
- Be true to yourself.
Rachel Elnaugh, founder of the experience gift company Red Letter Days, highlights the importance of doing business in a way that reflects not only your personality, but your passion and vision for the future. She advises to “do business in a way that is true to yourself, and
above all, one that brings you personal happiness and fulfilment.” After all, if you’re not excited and invigorated about what you’re doing, it does raise the question: why are you doing it?
- Don’t fear failure.
When you start researching the topic, you’ll realise that countless entrepreneurs experienced setbacks before they got it right. Oprah Winfrey was fired as a reporter before building a successful career on daytime TV. Even J.K. Rowling was rejected by 12 publishers at first (bet they’re regretting it now!). Sarah Blakely, founder of Spanx (and the US’s youngest female entrepreneur) says: “It’s important to be willing to make mistakes. The worst thing that can happen is you become memorable.”
Succeeding in Business
To summarise, here’s the
key things we can learn
from these inspirational
∙ Adapt to new trends.
∙ Look out for new
∙ Know your target market.
∙ Network, network, network!
(You never know who might
be perfectly positioned to help you succeed). ∙ Have a plan.
∙ Dare to be different, but stay true to yourself.
∙ Prepare yourself for a lot of hard work. Noone said it was going to be easy! ∙ Be fearless.
∙ Seize opportunities if they’re presented to you.
∙ Connect with your audience. (This is where social media can really help.)
Have We Missed Anything?
If you think we’ve missed anything off the list, or you want us to include any more inspirational quotes from female entrepreneurs, just let us know – either by email or our social media pages. If you’re a female in business, we’d love to hear about your experiences. What tips can you offer to women starting out?