Wednesday, May 5, 2010

So, You Want To Be An Entrepreneur?


In The Wall Street Journal’s “So, You Want to Be an Entrepreneur”, Kelly K. Spors writes that while entrepreneurs come from all sorts of backgrounds and personalities, there are still certain attributes that improve the odds that one will be happy and successful with one’s business. Before taking the entrepreneurial plunge, one should ask:
  • Do I like all aspects of running a business? You have to do it all, at least in the beginning, from creating the product to marketing and sales to bookkeeping and administration. If you hire an employee, you have to do all the training.
  • Am I comfortable making decisions on the fly with no playbook? You have to be a decisive decision-maker. In the beginning, there is no structure or precedent.
  • How persuasive am I? You have to sell others on your passion. You have to cold-call potential leads, network, and be willing to argue why your product is worth buying.
Are women who come to Women’s Initiative for Self Employment ready to take the entrepreneurial plunge? What stage of the entrepreneurial process are women in when they first come to Women’s Initiative?
Speaking with one of our business trainers, I learned that the average client already has her product and business idea in mind. She is confident in her skill set (be it cooking, cleaning, crafts) and has experience working in her field. She is capable and willing to learn, and the reason she comes into Women’s Initiative is because she has gotten stuck and seeks access to training and resources that she can’t find by herself.
Interestingly, the trainer said she found that more than just the business training, it is the sense of empowerment that women walk away with when they graduate from the course. More than learning the basic accounting, it is the confidence a woman gains that helps her communicate professionally and successfully convey what she wants.
So, you want to be an entrepreneur? Women’s Initiative has found that more than just the business training, it is the sense of empowerment, the chance to network, and be part of a larger support group where a woman can share her successes and mistakes that women entrepreneurs value most and which ultimately contribute, to her business success.

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