Successful businesswomen know it takes hard work, dedication, and a bit of savvy to make it to the top. But even the most driven women can fall prey to traps that can sabotage their success.
Whether you’re a business owner or pursuing a career working for someone else, here are 10 traps you could fall into without even realizing it as well as tips to avoid them so you’re as successful as possible.
1. Trying to Do It All Yourself
Trying to do it all yourself can leave you feeling overwhelmed and stressed. However, when you build a strong team around you and delegate tasks to the right people, you can focus on the most important aspects of your business or any project you’re working on.
Delegating also gives your team members a chance to build their skills, showcase their strengths, and contribute in meaningful ways. Having more hands on deck not only helps you spread out the workload but also gives everyone a sense of ownership over the work they’re accomplishing together.
If you feel like the weight of your to-do list is too much, delegate, delegate, delegate!
2. Not Setting Boundaries
Failing to set boundaries can have serious consequences for you, your business or job, and your life. If you don’t set boundaries, you’ll always feel overworked, exhausted, and unhappy.
When you don’t set boundaries and stick to them, you’ll have no work-life balance. As a result, your mental health and physical well-being could be negatively affected. In fact, the people around you, particularly friends and family members, could feel similar effects.
Therefore, learn how to say no. Set boundaries and stick to them no matter what. Leave on time – the work will still be there tomorrow.
3. Comparing Yourself to Others
Comparing yourself to others is never a good idea. While it’s important to learn from the success of people whose careers or businesses inspire you, don’t forget to consider their unique context and experiences.
The problem is you’ll neglect our own journey on your path to achieve your goals if you think someone else’s experience is what yours should look like instead. This type of thinking can lead to immense pressure, self-doubt, and ultimately, unhappiness.
Don’t get discouraged if your journey looks different from someone else’s – remember that every path is valid if it leads you towards your goal.
4. Being a People Pleaser
Being a people pleaser is great if your goal is to keep everyone around you happy at all costs. However, if your goal is to build a business or reach your career goals, you can’t be a people pleaser 100% of the time.
Instead, you need to find a balance between wanting to keep everyone around you happy, while at the same time, not sacrificing your career or business goals.
Remember that at the end of the day, everyone has their own agenda — making sure yours is met is just as important.
5. Being Too Hard on Yourself
Being too hard on yourself is a common problem faced by many people, but it can be detrimental to your mental health and create unnecessary roadblocks in your career or business growth.
With that said, it’s important to be mindful of your feelings and try not to harshly judge yourself for mistakes or get too caught up in expectations. Positive self-talk can help you boost morale, keep perspective, and recognize that you’re still learning, growing, and adapting each day.
Learning from your mistakes is important, but beating yourself up over them won’t help you progress. In fact, it could do exactly the opposite by making you feel paralyzed and unable to make decisions or more forward – both of which are detrimental to your career or business growth.
Procrastination is a common problem faced by many people. It can lead to stress, lower productivity, and even depression if left unchecked. However, the good news is that procrastination is not a permanent state – it only takes some effort and dedication to change.
Working on breaking bad habits, such as spending too much time scrolling through social media or finding other ways to distract yourself from the tasks you need to complete can help clear the way for more productive behavior.
Additionally, dividing up tasks into smaller steps can make daunting projects seem more manageable. Try creating an achievable schedule that you can follow each day – and reward yourself when you stick to it!
7. Not Setting SMART Goals
Sticking to goals can be hard, but one way to make sure you accomplish them is by setting SMART goals. By creating specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and timely objectives, it’s so much easier to keep track of progress and hit your goals.
Unfortunately, people tend to ignore this method of goal-setting because it takes time. As a result, they end up targeting the wrong goals altogether.
Not setting SMART goals could mean missing out on opportunities for growth. While following a SMART goal model might not guarantee success, it does provide discipline and organization that can help get you closer to achieving the results you want.
8. Not Having a Written Plan to Achieve Your Goals
Not having a written plan to achieve your goals is like setting out on a journey without any sort of map. Sure, you may end up in the general area you’re aiming for, but it’ll be by sheer luck more than anything else!
Writing down your goals and creating an action plan to help you reach them can give you the tools you need to get there faster. A plan also ensures you have everything you need along the way.
Taking the time to organize yourself and break down your plan into smaller, achievable steps will ensure success – don’t leave it up to chance!
9. Not Firing Quickly Enough
There is a saying that successful leaders and businesses hire fast and fire faster. The reason is simple. Keeping employees who don’t fit a position or aren’t a match for a company’s culture or goals can be detrimental to the company and even to the individual.
It’s important for business women in leadership positions to recognize problems quickly, evaluate them objectively, and address them respectfully. While it’s never easy to let someone go, having an honest conversation about lack of fit can benefit both the employer and the employee in the long term.
10. Failing to Confidently Self-Promote
Many business women overlook the importance of self-promotion in reaching their goals. Whether it’s a job, a promotion, business funding, or recognition for your hard work, you have to advocate for yourself in business.
Not taking advantage of the opportunities to hype your accomplishments, expertise, and abilities can put you at a disadvantage. Instead, you should take full advantage of any platform to communicate your value and worth to potential partners, investors, or employers.
This could include writing a great resume or business plan, networking with key individuals, or creating content that showcases your strengths and experiences. Take ownership for how you’re perceived by others when it comes to your business and/or career goals.
Key Takeaways about Avoiding Traps Business Women Commonly Fall Into
These are only 10 of the traps you should avoid in order to be successful as a business woman, but if you can keep these four things in mind, you’ll be well on your way to building a thriving business and/or career.