Women entrepreneurs are more prevalent in the business sector than ever before. The number of businesses owned by women has grown by 114 percent in the last 20 years. In the United States alone, women entrepreneurs start almost 850 businesses on a daily basis. This doubling of women-owned businesses is a direct consequence of the many challenges that women face in the modern workplace. A desire for better pay and more autonomy causes women to quit their regular Jobs and pursue their own businesses. That way they can also achieve better work-life balance and have more control over their finances.
Check out the revealing numbers and stats about women entrepreneurs in the US
Entrepreneurship is a source of pride for these women and a way to realize their dreams, but it comes with the various challenges associated with the modern and competitive marketplace. In this article, we will give you some tips on how to successfully maintaining and growing your business.
15 Tips for Women Entrepreneurs
- Create a network with other women like you. It helps to surround yourself with people in the same or similar positions as you, who understand where you are coming from and where you want to go. Having a support network of like-minded entrepreneurs can give you new ideas, fresh perspective, and increased passion for what you do.
- Continue your business education. Continuing your education does not necessarily mean going back to school. Thankfully, besides the traditional college route, there are plenty of online business courses offered independently of any degree programs. Many of these are designed specifically for women entrepreneurs, taking into account their unique experiences and obstacles. Many are also made to work around your schedule.
- Find a mentor. There are many women entrepreneurs who have gone down the road you are embarking on. Finding one who is willing to help you walk through the steps of owning and operating your own business is one of the best moves you can make. A mentor can point out likely mistakes from experience as well as give feedback for improvement. Your mentor can also help you figure out financing, a necessary step for any entrepreneur.
- Get support from women’s organizations. Numerous organizations exist specifically to help women entrepreneurs. If you are unsure where to start, check with the National Association of Women Business Owners. They have many resources to help you connect with organizations best suited for your business.
- Get feedback from other women entrepreneurs. While it is great to have a mentor who sets aside time to teach and guide you, there is no one businesswoman who knows everything. This is why it is so important to branch out and ask other women entrepreneurs what they are doing that works. You might think that you should only ask someone who owns a business like yours or that other business owners may not be eager to help. However, any business owner is likely able to give you some new insights, and you might be surprised at how interested other business owners are in giving advice.
- Showcase your knowledge to others. One great aspect of being a woman entrepreneur is being able to share your experience with others. This can be done by giving talks, writing articles or keeping a blog, or simply reaching out to newer entrepreneurs in your area and network. Showing what you know is one of the best ways to gain credibility in your field.
- Work in multiple fields. While it is important to focus on your business, make sure you build other skills too. You might be in the restaurant business, but growing your understanding of investments, loans, local laws, and fields related to your business, can only improve your management skills. You will need financing, for example, at some point in the life of your business; the more you know about your options, the easier gaining financing is.
- Spread the word. You need to make sure to get the word out about your business. Word of mouth can be a powerful advertising tool. The best ways to get people talking about your business is to maintain a quality product or service. Showing people your growing business and completed projects can help get them invested in what you are doing. Customers who develop loyalty to your brand are far more likely to tell others about it, compounding the benefits.
- Identify your audience. Do research on what types of customers are interested in businesses like yours, where they are, how much money they make, what kinds of careers they have, etc. Painting a clear portrait of your audience helps you strategically advertise and better serve their needs.
- Form an LLC. Incorporating is an important step in the life of your business. If you have not formed an LLC already, do so as soon as possible. Forming an LLC protects you from certain liabilities that come with running a business and removes unnecessary financial pressure. Once you form an LLC, it is wise to begin looking into financing options to help get the ball rolling.
- Be Confident. There are numerous stereotypes about women entrepreneurs. Ignore them. When you know what you want for your business, make that clear. Be firm and direct when you make decisions, and make sure to communicate them appropriately to everyone involved. Being confident is not the same as being arrogant or too hard on others. It simply means knowing what you know and standing by it.
- Become an expert about your business. Some people think you should know everything about a business or industry, but that is impossible. Instead, think of it like this: there is always something more to learn about your business. Keep pushing yourself to get more insight into better ways to manage, hire, make products, and serve customers.
- Define your goals. You need to be specific about the goals you want to achieve. You need a clear vision of where you plan to be and a timeline for achieving it. Without a solid business plan, you can find yourself wondering if you have made any progress toward your goals. One of the benefits of a business plan, and even a business log or journal is tracking how things are going to know whether something needs to change.
- Never limit yourself. While setting clear goals is vital, so is being flexible. There is no use in holding onto a plan or strategy that is not working. Instead, figure out what needs an adjustment and make it. Everyone makes mistakes and everyone gets better with experience, so as your business grows, make sure you do too.
- Get the right financing. Last but not least, make sure you have the working capital needed to run your business on a daily basis and the funds to invest in your company’s growth. Without the right financing, it is impossible for a business to run smoothly — if it even starts at all. If you lack capital, do not let that keep you from following your dreams. Find the financing resource that best fits your goals.
Finding the Right Financing
Securing the right financing is paramount for women entrepreneurs. Unfortunately, many women entrepreneurs feel underrepresented in financial institutions and challenged when it comes to finding financing options that suit them.
Thankfully, today there are numerous small business loans for women entrepreneurs. These loans are designed specifically to help meet women entrepreneurs’ unique needs and put them on a path to accomplishing their goals. Unlike other financing options, these loans are meant to help women entrepreneurs continue their growth in the marketplace. That means that these loans (and some grants too) are made with especially favorable terms so that you can make the most out of them.
There are also many financing options specifically for minorities available. These loans are offered with a similar philosophy as those for women entrepreneurs, so their terms are designed to help minority entrepreneurs grow their businesses and cement their position in the marketplace.
Camino Financial Supports Women Entrepreneurs Like You
At Camino Financial, our motto is “No Business Left Behind.” We are a finance company dedicated to helping women and minorities with the right financing to grow their businesses. Our founders, Sean and Kenny Salas, know what it is like to be an entrepreneur trying to navigate the complexities of today’s market. In fact, their own mother was once an entrepreneur too. Many of our members are women entrepreneurs who have experienced great success.
We are dedicated to matching women entrepreneurs with the best financing option for them, and we have fewer requirements than other lenders. We also assign each person a bilingual loan specialist to walk them through the entire financing process. Finally, we provide additional educational materials like webinars, events, and special discounts, to help women entrepreneurs succeed. Apply for a business loan with us today and start your journey off on the right foot.