Being an entrepreneur is not without its challenges, and if you are a woman, those challenges can seem to come twice as often and twice as fast. While very few people would dare speak out openly against a female entrepreneur in this day and age, the reality that so few women are doing it still speaks volumes about the difficulties, obstacles, and barriers women face that men do not when starting their own businesses.
Still, being an entrepreneur can be extremely rewarding regardless of gender, but sometimes, being an entrepreneur who is also a woman absolutely rules.
Here are seven occasions when being a woman and an entrepreneur is grand.
1. When You Exceed Your Own Expectations
A woman who starts her own company or product-line is a woman who has placed high expectations on herself, and because the terrain can be so tricky and unkind to women at the helm of anything, most women entrepreneurs become well acquainted with failure and coming up short on their paths to success. That is why it feels so spectacular when you race past the very high expectations you are aiming to meet. Others will congratulate you, but the self-congratulations you are finally able to give and receive yourself will always be sweetest.
2. When You’re Right
Being right feels great, regardless of what you are right about. Whether you catch the computer in a math glitch during an intense bowling game or you successfully predict a marketplace shift that nets your company millions of dollars, it is a feeling that is hard-to-beat — especially because so much of being the boss involves making decisions whose ramifications will not be seen for weeks, months, or even years. From finding hidden rewards in your business cards to brazenly and successfully negotiating with a venture capitalist for more money, it rules to be a woman entrepreneur who is in the right.
3. During Collaboration
A lot of studies have been conducted to show the effects women have on workplace culture, and, while there have been many fascinating takeaways, one of the most routinely stated points is that women tend to be better collaborators than men, which can yield greater creativity and productivity in a workforce.
For the female entrepreneur collaborating with her staff that means greater creativity and productivity are just natural by-products of a female-led venture.
4. During ‘Collabatition’
Collaborative competition, or ‘collabatition’, is something women are more interested in pursuing and pulling off than are their male counterparts. Instead of seeing a competitor as an enemy to defeat, women are more able to see their competitors as other people and businesses with whom they can work to complement one another in ways that are mutually beneficial. From passing work on to one another to teaming up for a major project, collabatition can greatly enhance your company’s current offerings.
5. When Emotional Intelligence Is Needed
Emotional intelligence is the ability to see, discern, rightly name, and understand one’s own and others’ emotions, and, in any workplace where human beings interact with one another — which is to say, all workplaces that have not been overtaken completely by machines and software — it is a highly prized skill. Because women tend to have, on average, more emotional intelligence than men, women can negotiate everything from water cooler politics to high-stress contracts with regular aplomb.
As a female entrepreneur, your emotional intelligence is a great advantage in almost everything you do. More than just making your own road less bumpy, it also helps smooth and even out the company culture for everyone you work with, from board members and employees to vendors and regulators.
6. When You are the Role Model
Whether you are standing in front of your daughter’s fourth grade classroom on Career Day or you are giving the commencement speech at your alma mater, being a woman entrepreneur and a role model is something to cherish and value.
While the number of women starting businesses is rising, the vast majority of businesses in the United States and around the world are still owned and maintained by men. For every young girl and young woman who has a dream of entrepreneurship, you get to be the proof that their dreams can be realized.
7. When You’re Happy…and When You’re Not
Being in charge is not a direct path to never-ending happiness and stress-free worries. Being satisfied and being unsatisfied will still enter your life, your work, and your relationships. It is because of that reality that building something you love from the ground up is so rewarding and satisfying. Happy or unhappy, you are a woman pursuing her own pathway, who answers first and foremost to herself.
In other words, it absolutely rules to be a woman entrepreneur.
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