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6 Things Women Entrepreneurs Can Do To Enhance Their Performance and Achieve Success

6 Things Women Entrepreneurs Can Do To Enhance Their Performance and Achieve Success

The mantra that women entrepreneurs are actually becoming more successful and ambitious than their male counterparts isn’t exactly unheard of today. They are highly ambitious and often start their career at a young age. There are known female actors, athletes and investors and directors who started in their teens and are now some of the most successful women in the world.

According to this report, over 8.6 million US businesses are run by female entrepreneurs. It is also reported that 90% of women entrepreneurs anticipate their companies’ revenues to either increase or remain stable the following year. The report’s revenue data indicates that companies commandeered by women entrepreneurs saw 13% higher profits than those run by men.

If you’re a struggling and ambitious female entrepreneur who’s looking to make it big in the corporate world, here are six things you can do now to boost your performance and attain unparalleled success:

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1. Surround Yourself with Positive Energy and Like-minded Individuals

The most productive female entrepreneurs surround themselves with people who propagate success and positive vibes. And these are the kind of people you can benefit from the most as they simply do not tolerate negativity or listen to what the whiners and naysayers have to say. There’s a little saying that goes along the lines of: “Those who can’t get it done shouldn’t deter those who can.”

There are many groups online and offline that cater to business owners seeking inspiration. Look for a network that matches your vision and business goals and don’t hesitate to share your problems or ask for help. Be inspired and motivated, celebrate your successes and tap into the power of such groups.

2. You Are Authentic and You Are Awesome

Authenticity, particularly in the business world, happens to be a highly bankable currency. It defines your business and truly sets you apart from the entire cookie-cutter industry. Leadership itself demands authenticity and if you try to steal someone else’s limelight, you will eventually fail. People want to look up to someone “real” who can lead them to success.

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Muster up the courage to offer a unique value proposition and market yourself strategically so that it speaks to your brand. If you’re constantly trying to be “everything to everyone”, you will end up as a jack of all trades and ace of none, something which can spell disaster for you as an entrepreneur. Develop a platform that says “this is what we do, who we are and why we love doing it”. Unleash your authenticity and awesomeness.

3. Ditch the Gender Baggage

One of the best pieces of advice you will get from the most successful businesswomen today is that success isn’t determined by your gender, it’s solely determined by you. Understand what your strengths and weaknesses revolve around and fearlessly pursue what you want. If you get stuck in a rut and worry too much about gender norms and expectations, you won’t get very far.

4. Work Smarter Not Necessarily Harder

Despite the fact that you have some pretty big shoes to fill, you don’t have to take everything on your shoulders. Consider outsourcing jobs that you either don’t have time for or don’t like doing such as bookkeeping, company formation, and admin or devising digital marketing strategies. All these tasks are important, but can be done by others too. Why not spare a small expense to unload a little extra mental bandwidth and free yourself up for tasks that demand more of your attention?

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Graeme Donnelly, CEO at Rapid Formations, says, “While most people come to us in order to get their company registered, some also discuss how it is getting more and more expensive to run a business today. All I tell them is to be smart. I also guide them on how they can save money on registration as a lot can be done for less .”

You can work smarter by leveraging your time – consider working with groups – especially if you can earn more at the same time. You might also adapt and repurpose old blog content instead of coming up with new ones all the time. There are many ways to work smarter and not harder.

5. Don’t Run Away From Your Fears

The idea of leaving a secure and well-paying job to start your own venture can instill a lot of fear and uncertainty. Understand that you must tap into every last ounce of confidence you can; confidence in yourself as well as your product.

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You’d be surprised to know how some women entrepreneurs tend to be conservative when it comes to promoting their talents; however, if you want to perform at your level best and find success, you need to be your own best friend while selling to prospective clients and investors. When you’re trying to build a business empire, there is just no place at all for false modesty.

Don’t let a lack of confidence get the best of you – that little voice that keeps telling you, you aren’t good enough or no one will ever buy what you’re selling. Put your vision into action and march forward with full confidence, by believing in yourself and what you have to offer.

6. Remember Why You Got into This

Running your own show can be a very stressful proposition and you might often find yourself thinking “Why am I doing this?”; during such times, take a few moments to reflect so as to why you got into entrepreneurship to begin with. Is it your spouse who motivates you? Is your youngest daughter the driving force behind your dreams or ambitions? Or are you simply looking to make a positive change in the female entrepreneurship world? Hone in on these factors and reflect on them from time to time to keep your drive going.

Good to know:

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Ahmed Raza

CEO of Samurais.co

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Last Updated on September 18, 2019

11 Hard Skills That Will Land You More Career Opportunities

11 Hard Skills That Will Land You More Career Opportunities

Are you looking to move up the career ladder? Or maybe you’re tired of having a “job” and want to start looking for a more permanent career?

Whatever your motivation, you are going to have to learn some new and different hard skills to broaden your opportunities. After all, there’s a very famous quote that says:

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” – Albert Einstein

While the insanity part doesn’t really fit here, the overall message is a good one. If you are looking for a different result (career advancement, more money or even a career instead of a job), it’s up to you to make it happen. This is both the good news and bad news!

The good news is that because it’s up to you, you have complete control over it happening. The bad news is that change is hard. Humans are creatures of habit, that’s why we develop routines, and anything that disrupts that routine causes us anxiety. And we will do almost anything to get rid of that anxiety. The overweight person will calm their anxiety by eating that doughnut, the smoker will light up a cigarette to avoid anxiety.

What we want to do with this article is to give you the hard skills you’ll need to reduce that anxiety so you can move up that corporate ladder, make more money or have career instead of just a “job.”

The following hard skills are essential to learn if you want to advance your career. They may not be easy to take up, but definitely worth your effort of learning:

1. Cloud Computing

“Simply put, cloud computing is the delivery of computing services—servers, storage, databases, networking, software, analytics, intelligence and more—over the Internet “the cloud” to offer faster innovation, flexible resources, and economies of scale. You typically pay only for cloud services you use, helping lower your operating costs, run your infrastructure more efficiently, and scale as your business needs change.” Microsoft[1]

There are many different jobs available in the cloud computing world today. They range from architects and developers to data scientists, security pros. Each job is its own specialty and requires a high level of specification for advancement.

This is definitely a hard skill that requires education. But if the tech world and computers are your thing you can make cloud computing a lucrative career.

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2. Data Mining and Statistical Analysis

Again, these are highly specialized fields. Data mining is defined as using large sets of data to look for anomalies and other patterns that can be used to predict future behavior.

Amazon is probably the best known company to use data mining. Have you ever noticed that when you buy something at Amazon, you’ll see a little ad at the bottom that says “customers who bought this also bought…”and it lists 2-3 other items? All of that information comes from data mining, by examining the millions of sales amazon makes they can predict that if you buy item #1 there is a high likelihood that you will buy one of the other items too. T

his not only increases sales for Amazon, but it also serves as a reminder for you that you may need these additional items for your project. This is very valuable information and has a wide range of uses. Although it has a bad reputation and evil sounding name, it is a very useful tool for maximizing productivity and sales.

3. Data Management

All companies today deal with a ton of data! Being able to manage that data in an efficient manor is not only highly prized, but a necessity.

We all have these things on our desks called computers. Unless there is a need for a paper copy, almost all of our data is computerized. Meaning that, in theory it is all at our fingertips. Being able to organize that data so that it’s easily and quickly retrievable is why computers are replacing filing cabinets!

However, just like the old fashion filing cabinet, data management on a computer is only good if it’s well organized. You want to make sure that you are keeping your data well organized so that it’s easy to find when needed. This is a skill that comes easily to some people (are you a person that makes lists? Good!) but with others it will be a skill that needs to be practices. Make sure that this is a discipline you master.

4. Scheduling

Being able to make and keep to a schedule is a very useful tool in both business and life. Effective scheduling means that you can prioritize projects, understand the tools needed to get the job done on time and that you are organized enough to lead people.

An important point here is to write things down! Whether it’s in an old fashion daily or weekly organizer or in a PDA. Have a copy of your schedule available at your fingertips at all times.

5. Financial Skills

These are especially important when looking for that promotion. The higher up the ladder you go, the more you’ll have to deal with things like accounting, budgeting, financial planning and cash flow management.

While you may not need to be an expert at all of these, you should have a good grasp of all of them. This is where taking a few night classes at your local community college is a good idea. You don’t need to become an expert, but brushing up on these skills will help you tremendously.

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6. Research Skills

These are important in all aspects of life, but especially in your work-life.

Are you looking for that first job out of school? Nothing impresses a boss or hiring manager more than someone who has researched the company. Trust me, they deal with people walking in off the street everyday looking for a job, but managers and owners need to see the value in hiring (or promoting) you.

So do your research and have some company specific questions ready to ask. Show that you are interested in working for that company or that position and not just “a” job or the “promotion” because you have seniority or need the money.

If it’s a promotion that you are after, never bad mouth the previous occupant. Instead pick out an example that he/she was good at and explain how you would like to use or expand that policy and how it would enhance the policy changes you’d like to make.

If it’s a new job you’re going for, then make sure to have some company specific questions ready to show that you have done your homework for the new position.

7. Marketing Skills

While marketing a companies products or services has always been a highly sought after skill. In today’s world, it can take on several different forms.

Some of the marketing skills that are highly sought after today include, SEO, Search Engine Optimization, SEM, Search Engine Marketing and marketing campaign management. Familiarity with Google Analytics as well as Word Press are also valuable.

While traditional marketing and branding were focused on advertising and selling. Almost all marketing efforts now a days are focused on the internet.

8. Network Security Specialist

Again, this is a highly skilled position that requires specialized training. But the amount of data that all companies store is significant, and if that data is leaked or stolen, it can costs them millions of dollars in both lost revenue and lawsuits.

So, if you have an interest in network security you will find the field both lucrative and stable.

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9. Communication Skills

At first glance, communication skills may not look like it fits into the category of “Hard Skills” that can help you succeed. But in this ever shrinking world where companies can do business from almost anywhere, communication is more and more important.

Are you bilingual? It really doesn’t matter what language you speak, there’s a company out there looking for someone who speaks that language.

10. Computer Programming

I don’t know about you, but I’m pretty sure that computers are going to be around for a while! As both the hardware and software get more advanced, the need for computer programming is only going to increase.

11. Graphic Design

As of 2018, there were 4.37 million new websites launched.[2] A good number of them will fail because they just aren’t interesting enough visually. The use of templates and replicated websites is only making the problem worse.

Part of the way Google ranks sites is through originality, this almost ensures that replicated sites will never get ranked through Google. So the more original your site is, the more likely people will visit and actually spend time there.

That is what a good graphic designer does. Takes your basic idea and turns it into a website that people actually want to visit.

Embrace the Anxiety That Comes with Change

You know it’s going to be there, you know that you’ll want to give up as you’re learning these new skills but, you’ll also know that the end result is worth the journey.

Here’s a little trick when you’re feeling overwhelmed:

Have you ever met an ex-smoker who was sorry they quit? An ex-drinker or drug user that said life was much better before they quit? These people have gone through some of the most difficult challenges humans can go through including weeks, if not, months of intense physical withdrawal symptoms. They did it because they knew that the pain and anxiety they would experience would ultimately get them to a much better life.

Now what was that complaint you had about attending night-school?

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This is the part everyone hates, everyone thinks night-school, adult education and just generally giving up family and/or spare time. While those are certainly possible ways to develop the necessary skills, they aren’t the only way.

You’ll want to check with your human resources department because depending on the company, a certain degree maybe required in order to even be considered for a position. In those cases, night-school, on-line or some other form of adult education maybe your best route.

But as long as a degree isn’t required, then your options are wide open.

Let’s just say that you’re a sales person interested in becoming the sales manager but, the territory you’ve been given will never produce the sales figures that would make you stand out as a good candidate for sales manager. So how about you start your own side business (don’t compete with your company), but let’s say you enjoy golf.

In this day and age, there are plenty of places that will teach you how to sell products on-line and even set you up with your own website. So you start a site selling golf equipment and accessories (don’t worry, you won’t even have to carry inventory or worry about shipping).

Now, when that sales manager spot opens up, you can explain that even though other salespeople had better numbers than you, it had nothing to do with your sales ability, it was more of a consequence of the territory your were given.

And to prove it, you brought in some information about a side business, you started showing that you’re on target for a sales growth rate of 30% this year. And because you had to do all of the marketing for the business, you came up with some marketing strategies that you can bring to the new job (built-in experience).

The Bottom Line

We’ve put together these 11 hard skills as a way to give yourself a “leg up” on the competition. We’ve tried to make this a mixture of both skills that require a great deal of training, and also ones that you can work on and develop by yourself.

We know that not everyone is cut out to be a cloud computing expert, but we also know that working on and having good scheduling skills will make you a much more desirable candidate for the position!

We also don’t want you to discount the idea of a “side hustle“. Especially for people new to the workforce, having a business that you have started and run successfully shows potential employers that you have initiative, scheduling skills and ambition which can put you well ahead of your competition!

As usual, we hope you found this article both enjoyable and informative. If you did, may we ask that you share it with your family and friends through social media. It really does help us and is greatly appreciated!

More Skill to Help Advance Your Career

Featured photo credit: Kyle Sterk via unsplash.com

Reference

[1] Microsoft Azure: Cloud Computing
[2] Netcraft: December 2018 Web Server Survey

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