Five skills you need right now as a female entrepreneur – Sharon Alofokhai
The entrepreneurship journey stretches and makes you grow in ways you never thought possible. Along the journey, you will definitely have to learn new things: new skills, new traits, new ways of doing things, etc. Many women are making mighty strides in business and entrepreneurship today. If you took the time to study some of these women, you would most likely find that they share similar traits.
Look and see which of these traits you have and which ones you need to develop on your journey to becoming the #bosslady of your dreams.
1. Goal setting: Being an entrepreneur has a lot to do with being a self-starter and being able to get things done without anyone’s supervision. If you will succeed at business, it is essential that you learn how to set clear short term and long term goals, follow up with corresponding actions and appraise yourself from time to time.
Mapping out goals will ensure that you’re not coasting but that you’re actually making measurable progress. If your goals are spelt out and put in writing, it will help you track them and know how far you’re progressing. Setting goals also helps keep you motivated on those days when it looks like you’re so far from your dreams. By looking at the goals you’ve already accomplished, you’ll feel encouraged to keep going!
2. Relationship building: Life is really about relationships. Opportunities open up as you build relationships with more and more people. Isolation is not an advantage in business. Even if you are introverted, you can just be more intentional about connecting with people. You can begin with the person who sits next to you at an event or on the plane. Then, you can learn to attend certain workshops and events to meet with mentors or influencers in your field. This is an easy way to be strategic with your relationship building.
Building relationships is a skill to have not only because you can turn those casual relationships into paying clients, but because you can also be inspired or motivated by people you meet. Someone can say something that would spark innovation or your next big idea. So, go on and make friends!
3. The art of making continuous sales: As an entrepreneur, you need sell, sell and sell some more! Now, may people think that selling is equivalent to cajoling or coercing people and that’s why they shy away from it. But selling is beyond that. It’s simply communicating the value in your product or service to prospective buyers.
As the Chief Marketing Officer of your business (especially at the start), you need to let as many people as you can know about your business. At the start-up stage, it is unlikely that you have a large budget for traditional marketing, and so, you’d want to make the most of every conversation. From working on conversation starters, you can start seeking out speaking opportunities; all in a bid to make sales. Don’t let shyness hold you back. The next person might know someone who needs your goods or services. So, get selling!
4. Time Management: If you want to be highly productive as an entrepreneur, you’ll have to learn how to do the most with the 24 hours that are in a day. It will always seem like there’s not enough time, so you need tactics to ensure that you maximize the time you have. The easiest way to do this is by scheduling your tasks. Arrange them in order of priority and urgency.
Also be conscious of the fact that the internet is a time stealer if you’re not careful! You might start out trying to google something and end up on Instagram, browsing your friends’ pictures or watching the latest Beyonce video!
5. Balance: Now, there will always be many balls to juggle. It’s important for you to learn how to balance all the many important things you’ll have to do. Sometimes, gaining this balance means asking for help or learning to delegate. It’s okay to hand some of the balls over to others so you can have better control over the ones in your hands.
At other times, gaining this balance will come by saying no. As much as you may want to help and be of service, you can’t be everyone’s saviour a 100% of the time (not without some major super powers)! So, you may have to turn down certain opportunities at the present moment just to keep your balance. Sometime in the future, when priorities have shifted, you might find yourself able to take on that opportunity, if not something bigger!