In case you haven’t noticed, this is the age of the Fempreneur – more women are starting and running their own businesses than ever across the globe. According to the National Association of Women Business Owners, there are 12.3 million women-owned businesses in the United States. The Women’s Business Enterprise National Council state that women-owned businesses generate $1.8 trillion a year. However, as a woman, we have many roles in life, which take our time and energy. So, what makes a great fempreneur when our time and energy are both valuable and finite? There are specific qualities of successful fempreneurs.
Having worked with and interviewed hundreds of female entrepreneurs across the world, I’ve identified qualities that most badass bossladies possess.
5 Qualities of Successful Fempreneurs:
1. Being an Essentialist
A quality of a successful fempreneur is the ability to boil down tasks to what must be completed by them – as the business owner. They eliminate “busy work” and tasks that are not essential to the business and outsource tasks that are not a good use of their time. Successful fempreneurs automate tasks using appropriate software – like setting up automatic bill pay and invoicing, and even automated email campaigns. Finally, they develop a team that is based on mutual trust, so they can delegate tasks as needed.
The steps to becoming an essentialist take a time investment when setting them up, but the outcome pays dividends when they can grow, scale and manage their business seamlessly.
2. Making SMART Goals
I’ve always been an advocate of SMART goals – while goal setting is important – following the SMART technique ensures success. SMART stands for:
S – Specific
M – Measurable
A – Attainable
R – Realistic
T – Timely
For example, it’s not enough for an effective fempreneur to say, “I want to grow my business.” With a SMART goal, a fempreneur drills down to, “I want to grow my business by 5 percent in 7 months by completing 20 more sales per month.”
The goal is Specific, saying you would like to grow your business by 5 percent. It is Measurable because you know it is 5% more than you are currently selling. Attainable and Realistic because an extra 20 sales a month might be a push, but it could happen. And Timely because there is a timeline set for the goal.
3. Focused on Their “Why”
As Simon Sinek says best, people don’t by what you do, they buy WHY YOU DO IT.
Successful fempreneurs focus on their ‘why’ for their business. While bottom lines are important, customers do not frequent a business simply because of a product. They also visit businesses and ultimately spend money because they believe in the idea of the business. As an example, with Starbucks, you are not merely getting a cup of coffee. You are also getting the experience of having a barista make you a perfect cup and get the prestige of you carrying around a cup with their logo, and from a company that has made a name for itself beyond coffee – but activism and community support.
Fempreneurs understand that they are not merely selling a product or service. They are selling an experience, a belief, or an idea that appeals to their customers.
4. Understand the Pulse of Their Customer Base
Fempreneurs know what drives their customer base. They understand how a product or service fills a need in their customers’ lives. Successful fempreneurs use trusted resources or gather the data themselves to know what customers are looking for in their products. They engage with current and potential customers for feedback on their products, and they look for similar aspects of their customers’ lives to directly market to a more extensive customer base. Lastly, they never underestimate the power of word-of-mouth marketing from their current customers.
5. Always Learning
Most productive fempreneurs are learning from every person they encounter and absorb more knowledge through mentors, media, book and courses. They understand that there is always a way to do things to improve, to grow, and to lead their team and themselves better to create happy and fruitful lives. They seek out resources and opportunities to grow and develop themselves – they know their knowledge is limitless and that they can always learn.