The corporate world and the world of entrepreneurship are vastly different. When you work in corporate, you follow the guidelines and processes set by a board of executives. Alternatively, as an entrepreneur, you are that executive who sets the operating processes for your business. As a woman entrepreneur, this is a huge change. Now, you are in charge and leading the way. Therefore, you must learn to properly handle the world of entrepreneurship if you want to graciously exit from the corporate environment successfully.
Fortunately, the statistics for women pursuing the entrepreneurial path are favourable. The 2017 State of Women-Owned Businesses done by American Express concluded that more than 11.6 million firms are owned by women. These businesses generated $1.7 trillion in sales and employed nearly 9 million people. Furthermore, women own nearly 39 per cent of all privately held businesses.
These statistics clearly illustrate that more women are transitioning from the corporate world to the path of entrepreneurship. If you are reading this, you are most likely a woman who wants to become an entrepreneur yourself. The one thing that is keeping you back from making this change, though, is that you are not sure how to get started. Luckily for you, we have put together a list of 6 tips that will help you succeed in the transition from corporate life to entrepreneurship.
1) Your mind-set sets the tone
Mind-set plays a big role in how we operate and compete in everyday life. The way you think about yourself and the world around you dictates your performance. A negative mind-set means that you’ll perform poorly. This is as you do not believe in your ability to succeed. A positive mind-set will propel you to a higher performance level because you believe anything is possible. You must learn to think with a positive outlook if you want to produce positive results while embarking on your entrepreneurial journey.
Remember, neither your gender nor race plays a major factor in your capacity to start a business. What counts is your ability to get the job done. For the most part, customers only care about how well you serve their needs. They do not pay much attention beyond this. Therefore, you cannot get caught up with negative thoughts that only work to hold you back. If you do this, you are only defeating yourself, which makes it hard for you to succeed as an entrepreneur. You definitely do not want to be the cause of your own downfall.
If you have issues achieving a positive mind-set, you need to change your thoughts immediately. One way to do this is by using positive affirmations throughout the day. Place these affirmations in your bathroom mirror, on your phone, at your desk, and in your car. View these affirmations throughout the day to motivate yourself, sustain a positive mind-set, and keep brave in the face of challenges. This will help you stay focus and accomplish your goals. Making positive affirmations a daily habit will help you overcome any doubts that creep into your mind.
Related Article: 5 myths about startups that hold you back
2) Prepare your finances
Unfortunately, even though women start more than half of U.S. businesses, a very small percentage of them receive venture capital funding. With this being the case, you must create a financial strategy that allows you to build funds for your business. If you do not have a sound financial plan, you will find yourself re-entering the corporate world sooner than you would like.
While you are still employed in the corporate world, you need to start saving money to prepare for your transition into entrepreneurship. The way to do this is to live below your means, reduce your expenses, and take care of any debts you have. It will take money to build your business, and you will most likely have to go without a paycheck for a few months, especially if you are starting your business from scratch when quitting the corporate world. If you want to sustain and move your business forward, you must be financially disciplined. Such an attitude will allow your business to thrive in the long-term.
Related Article: Top 22 venture capital firms and angel investors in Singapore
3) Be aware of your emotions
Entrepreneurship is an emotional rollercoaster ride. This is because you are trying to build something from nothing. You will face a lot of rejections, and money will be tight. Sometimes, it will feel like everything is going wrong. You cannot allow any of these things to negatively impact your emotions. Sure, that is easier said than done, but you cannot become a victim to the bad moments. If you allow your emotions to rule your behaviour, you will find yourself doing things that harm your business.
It is helpful to remember the old adage, “This too shall pass”. In other words, everything that happens is only momentary. Yes, the moment can be overwhelming at the time, but it is not the final point of your journey. Stay focused on your ultimate goal — to build a successful business. If your drive to be successful is greater than the adversity at hand, you will put yourself in a position to overcome any challenge you deal with.
4) Have a plan to succeed
It is easy to visualize a successful business in your head. This includes the size of your ideal company, the money your business will generate, and the lifestyle your successful business will earn for you. It all sounds motivating, but you must have a way to turn your motivating thoughts into a reality. Most people in the world constantly dream about living a successful lifestyle in their head, but only a small percentage of individuals achieve said lifestyle. If you want to join the circle of success, you need to create and implement a strategy to get you there.
Entrepreneurship is a process of actions that align together to produce an outcome. This is how businesses work and how life goes in general. Therefore, you must identify the actions that will lead you to create a successful business. Entrepreneurs do not just stumble upon success. Success is produced from consistent actions that build upon one another to move your business forward. So, you should be working on continually growing your business. That being said, business growth requires customer acquisition tactics. Working in your business means that you have to be constantly focused on business maintenance. Focus most of your time on acquiring customers. You can hire people to maintain your business or outsource those tasks to another company. Do not waste your time on those activities that do not bring revenue into your business.
Related read: How to achieve your business goals within 90 days
5) Be flexible
So, you have created a plan. But this does not mean that things will always go accordingly. Changes in a plan can freeze some people in their place because they are not sure how to improvise. What you must understand is that when you are an entrepreneur, things change at any moment. For example, the agreement that you had in place can fall through, or sales appointments result in “no shows”. Sometimes, things will not go accordingly, but you have to be able to rebound quickly and continue moving forward.
If you want your day-to-day to be predictable, the life of an entrepreneur may not be for you. Entrepreneurship embodies the concept of unpredictability. The most successful entrepreneurs learn how to adapt quickly and work with what they are given. You never know what can come of it if you remain focused on producing results. Your business could be in the red for most of the month and then suddenly have $20,000 in revenue from a deal that began as a conversation two weeks prior. This would not have happened if you had not remained persistent. Circumstances change quickly in the world of entrepreneurship, so you must be prepared to move forward when they do.
6) Build your network
No entrepreneur is a self-made success story. Yes, success is created through hard work, but you need the help of other people to move your vision forward. This is why it is important for you to form relationships with other entrepreneurs who can provide you with new opportunities and make key introductions to prospective individuals.
Go out and attend networking events. Connect with other professionals on LinkedIn. Walk into local businesses and introduce yourself. Start building relationships now so that people know who you are and what you do. Doing this will help you in the long-run.
Transitioning from the corporate world into entrepreneurship is not as tough as it seems. Sure, the road to success is certainly not going to be easy, but it is achievable if you follow the 6 tips we have provided for you. If you follow them closely, you will build a successful business sooner than you think.
We hope you gained a deeper insight into this blog article. If you are a woman looking to start your entrepreneurship journey in Singapore, we’d love to help!
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