Sometimes it is hard to be a woman who is trying to achieve success in the business world. When you need inspiration, you might try to look around for examples of success at the highest levels of corporate America, but find they are few and far between. It might seem like the deck is stacked against you, but a surprising number of females have persisted against seemly insurmountable odds, and followed their dreams to become successful small business owners.
Slowly but surely, female entrepreneurs are finally beginning to make their mark. In fact, a CNBC report boldly predicted that women entrepreneurs will be THE economic force to reckon with in 2017. Women have gained dramatically on their male counterparts in fields as diverse as retail, finance and neuroscience. Many offer their own unique touch with personalized services, or include a strong social mission component as part of their reason for being. So what are some of the advantages and challenges facing these dynamic entrepreneurs?
• Up – Inspiration: It is overwhelming to feel like the lone female in a world crowded with male entrepreneurs. As the hardy pioneers of female business success now begin to share their stories though, the inspiration and companionship needed to dive into the business pool are gradually beginning to rise. Aspiring business owners should look for female mentors who are willing to share their hard-won knowledge.
• Challenge – Funding: It is still hard for female entrepreneurs to get a break in the funding arena. Most turn to self-funding, family or friends, but continue to experience a disheartening lack of access to venture capital. Women need to look for those who have broken through this barrier, and study their path to success, as a reliable flow of funding is key to rapid expansion and growth.
• Advantage – Available Info: There has never been a better time for gaining access to the know-how and secrets required to start and run an enterprise. The internet, Small Business Administration, social media, YouTube, and specialty television programs are all bursting with tips and tricks. Don’t wallow in darkness – get involved, do your research, and find the information you need.
• Challenge – Growth: Despite the many advances females have experienced in the business world, it is still difficult for women-owned businesses to break through the magic “glass ceiling” and consistently generate more than $500,000 in revenue. The time for achieving this goal is probably not far off, though, and will certainly be met more reliably by women with passion, drive and desire.
It has taken time for the business world to change and respond to the presence of women at the wheel of more companies, but the pace of that change is rapidly accelerating. As more and more women achieve success, they will serve as inspiration to legions of young female entrepreneurs who will take advantage of their successes, and help to solve their challenges.