7 Key Lessons to For The Mature Woman in Business

As a budding business  woman or entrepreneur there are always new challenges and new lessons to learn more or less every day. Whilst is it sound advice to get yourself a mentor and coach to help you through, at some point you have to fly solo and deal with the trials and issues that dog most new businesses.

Rather than seeing these as trials it is more productive to embrace them as opportunities for learning. There is no failure only feedback so open your mind to the learning you receive from what goes wrong.

Fortunately there is also a wealth of information from other entrepreneurs who are happy to share what they have learned so you also learn from their mistakes without having to make them first. Here is a roundup of 7 key lessons for the budding business women

Focus on your goals like a homing pigeon, i.e. keep them in mind and head for them always so you remain on course.

It is easy to get distracted when there is no one directly holding you to account. As your own boss if you choose to spend the day in the garden with a book or watching day time tv there is no one to sack you because of poor productivity. However, your business will suffer. Worse still if you get into the habit of taking ‘me’ days before you know it this becomes your regular work pattern. Like all bad habits, it is a lot easier to create than to break.

Being your own boss, means that you get to tell yourself what to do! So be firm and make sure you give yourself a set off clear targets to be completed each day. Then remember to appraise your performance at the end of the day and praise yourself for all your achievements.

When you are clear on your goals it’s much easier to avoid the temptation of a sunny day or catching up on the next episode of your favourite soap.

In addition to your daily tasks it is also helpful to set yourself short, medium, and long range goals for the business. Make sure you write these down and put them up where you can have regular sight of them. Then if you feel yourself loosing focus you need only look up at them to remind yourself why you are doing this and where you are heading. For this reason it is also good idea to create a vision board of your ideal future – what your life would look like if you were to fully achieve your aims. Find images of the material things you aspire to own, ie your dream home, car, holidays etc. A good tip is to create a screen for your computer save using the images so it flashes up whenever your computer starts to idle. You can also write yourself a letter from the future describing the life you are enjoying and keep it in your pocket.

The more you step into the future the more you will not only keep focussed but you will also start to naturally seek out things that will help you get your vision of the future. Your strong desire to live the life you have imagined will ensure that you are engaged in goal-achieving activities rather than just being busy working and resenting it.

Persistence.

Near enough every story you read about a very successful business enterprise begins with stories of failed attempts at launching the product or service to an un appreciative market. In that respect starting a business is a bit like childbirth. The pain is horrendous but once most women set eyes on the beautiful baby, the pain is completely forgotten. Likewise, in business all you hear are the success stories and the difficulties are somewhat glossed over.

Anyone who succeeds in business does so because they are persistent. They refuse to give up, despite the initial lack of sales, lack of money and looming creditors ready to break down your door. When the weak hearted give up, these entrepreneurs dig in for the long haul.

If you can survive this period you will eventually be able to reap the rewards of all your  hard work.

Follow your passion.

There is an old saying in business – passion first!  Chasing money is another recipe for entrepreneur failure.

If you can do something that you love for a living, then you will be happy doing it. This will inspire others and they will be attracted to your business.

 

Invest time and money in personal development.

To become a successful entrepreneur you need adopt an entrepreneurial mindset. As most people are not born with one this has to be cultivated.

It’s a good plan to spend at least 1-2 hours a day on your personal development. Start by identifying your knowledge and skills gaps in relation to your business idea in terms of what you need to know to achieve your aims. Then begin identifying training material, books etc that with the aim of creating a personal library. Finally you should put it together in a plan so that you are clear on what you have to learn and by when.

Learn to juggle.

Take time out and do something that engages our creative brain, the right side of the brain such a juggling, painting, free writing (where you just write out all your thoughts as they occur to you) . Meditation is good to because it take you out of the business of your mind and connects you to the rhythm of your breath. No one became a successful entrepreneur overnight. It takes time. So allow yourself to get away from the pressures of having to meet deadlines and make money. When you provide the space for your thoughts to run free, many people discover that they stumble upon some of their greatest ideas.

Co operation is your key to success.

As the song goes, no man (or in this case woman) is an island. In the modern age of business competition and competitors is an out mode way of looking at things.  If other people have the same business idea and niche as you do idea then at least that tells you that there is money to be made in it or why else would they be it. Whilst it is possible that you are all wrong it is unlikely. By working with other entrepreneurs you give yourself access to all the information that they have, you can build in what they have done and collaborate on ideas.  The fastest way to build a network is to work with people in your felid who already have a network. Look for creative ways to add value to what they do and they will welcome you with open arms

Find a good coach and mentor.

There is nothing like having the voice of experience to walk with you on a journey if you’ve not done something before. In addition to providing you with tips and tricks based on their experience they may also provide invaluable morale support and an opportunity to look at other areas of your life which have an impact on how well you are able to perform in your business.

Your mentor doesn’t have to be one person or necessarily a business guru. Being able to be challenged about your ideas and being held to account could work equally with a group of your peers or a close friend.

You are going to need a lot of support in the early days as starting a successful business can be a  tough journey initially. As well as the occasional prod to get you going when you start to lose momentum, you will also need the voice of wisdom telling you to take care of yourself when you’ve been burning the candle at both ends for too long.

Most entrepreneurial opportunities command a steep learning curve. It helps to talk to someone who’s been there.

Image: African Woman by africa

About Ola Agbaimoni

Known as "The Business Detective" due to her "Sherlock Holmes" like problem solving abilities, Ola works in partnership with her sister Carole Pyke, The Business Bard. Together they run Eélan Media, a new type of Business growth agency offering a forensic approach to business and a creative approach to marketing. As well as being an expert in business planning, training and development, Ola is also a certified coach, NLP practitioner; an accomplished author, speaker and presenter.

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