“Women make me the most money.”
This is the abbreviated headline from a March 22, 2018 CNBC article featuring an interview with millionaire investor and Shark Tank celebrity, Kevin O’Leary.
I follow the Shark Tank show in moderate gusto, due to my significantly limited TV watching time. It’s always an experience to see the “Shark” investors in their world, deciding with jaw-dropping expertise about the viability, probability of success, and investing in the various businesses that are pitched to them. Therefore, reading the CNBC article about women entrepreneurs made me wonder about how many potential women superstars have not ventured into the experience of becoming business owners who could be ‘making the most money…’ – Or simply doing something they enjoy.
It’s saddening to discover the reticence, doubts, and self-imposed roadblocks that female peers such as myself would raise across their paths of becoming business undertakers. If you’re a woman who has toyed with the idea of starting an establishment in some business area, but have not done so yet, this is pondering the question: What is the hold up?
I am an advocate for education about the rewards of business ownership. Can you put a value on having your own work hours? Reaching a point where you can leave your business for vacations that you can easily afford because you’ve been able to build up your business to that extent? Having more disposable income to play with because you can set your goals on how much you want to make, and see yourself get there?
I could continue with a laundry list of what business ownership can do for you.
Or perhaps – You already own a business. However, you’ve been experiencing challenges. You wonder if you’re up to the tasks being thrown at you. In fact, you think you would consider throwing in the towel.
In either of these cases – Don’t get held up.
As a woman who has started a couple of business ventures, I am always on the look-out for research, facts, and reviews regarding women-run businesses, because I find them to be inspirational.
I had a journey behind me to get to this spot today. Graduating from college but without a clue as to why I earned the degree or what I wanted to do with it, I roamed the corporate world for more than seven years trying to figure out “who I want to be when I grow up.” I switched jobs as frequently as changing hair-dos (and my hairstyles changed with amazing regularity back in the day).
In my job-roam during my early years after college graduation, I met individuals who had pert opinions about my indecision. I remember handing in my resignation at a company where I had worked for approximately six months. About a week after my departure from the company, I met one of my former co-workers at the mall. After greetings and small talk, and as we parted ways, she said, in a fun-poking, get-your-act-together, kind of laughing-but-yet mocking tone, “Well, I wish you all the best and hope you figure out whatever it is that you want to do.”
Emphasis on the whatever.
The reason why I tell this story is to provide a backdrop of a woman’s journey into entrepreneurship and hold ups. I was very grateful for the comment I received on that day from the former co-worker. It was one of the catalysts that started me on a journey of discovery into entrepreneurship.
My hold up in my career journey? I did not believe in my skills back then. It’s a different story today!
This is not to say that non-entrepreneurial careers are on a lower rung than entrepreneurial ones. Today, I have a regular job – But I am also doing something as an entrepreneur that complements the skills I need in any world – The art of writing.
Whether you’ve already discovered a business that you absolutely love; or you’re still in an indecisive or other mode, and don’t know if you should take that leap of faith into trying your hands at business ownership – I have 3 tried-and-proven steps that have helped me to start a business, and I hope will be of good use to you as you embark on this journey of growth as a career and business woman:
1. Make a List
There is a formula for competency in any career: Ability + Current + or – Passion
Here is the low down: It doesn’t matter how much one is passionate about a type of work (i.e., Passion). If they don’t have the skills to work it (i.e., Ability), and the skills have to be the latest for that line of work (i.e., Current) – it is an obvious result that such a business is not for you. (Of course, it’s a bonus if you have the skills for that work and are also passionate about it!)
Therefore, to begin your new venture, start your journey into business ownership by listing or brainstorming all your skill areas and determining how current you are in the marketplace on those skills. If you’re not current, no worries. There are lots of resources such as online courses on platforms like Udemy, which will give you in-depth or crash-introductions into what you need to know to get started.
2. Find a Mentor
As mentioned in point one, you want to be current on the skills required for your business, for instance, by taking a course. In your course, you may find that the instructor is the mentor that you need, who could guide you into every aspect of the business. Or, you may search around for someone else who could teach you the ropes on how things get done.
The bottom line is, no matter how knowledgeable you think you are in a skill area, you can never go wrong with having a pathfinder who has proven results of success in that field, and who you can shadow – sort of like a support system that will keep you motivated and accountable.
3. Do It
After figuring out your ideal skill area and finding someone who can drive you along the right paths of it, the final thing to do is the easiest – just do it.
Start the Youtube channel. Open the day care (Disclaimer: Licenses are needed in most or all jurisdictions for this). Make hand-crafted jewelry.
Whatever your skill is (and bonus, maybe you also have passion for it), would it not be a gratifying daily experience to get up and get it done everyday, and make some good money in the process? Remember what the Shark mentioned in the CNBC article I quoted previously, “Women make me the most money…”
You don’t know the extent of your abilities if you haven’t stretched yourself yet. Therefore, what’s the hold-up? Become a money-making, business success superstar.
You’ve got this!
About the Author
Victoria Thomas is a writer, intellectual property lawyer, and business owner of the writing company, Omega Inscribe, Inc. She helps women writers find their niche in the writing world such as novel, movie script, academic, and every other form of writing. As an intellectual property lawyer, she provides added value to her clients by assisting them with copyright and trademark processes for their written works at the United States Patent and Trademark Office. When Victoria is not providing support to a client, she spends a lot of leisure time at birthday parties, dinners and other social events that feature finger foods.