Being a female entrepreneur isn’t an easy job. Whether you’re a solopreneur or in charge of a team, you still end up juggling a million different jobs and constantly trying to outrun time.
It’s a career we’re all passionate about (you wouldn’t be an entrepreneur if you didn’t love what you do) but sometimes we’re so exhausted doing menial tasks that we forget the important things.
Without adding much more to your plate, here are six small but essential things you should be doing every week if you’re a female entrepreneur.
Recommended reading: Four New Year’s Resolutions Every Entrepreneur Should Set
Read a book: be prepared to learn
Learning doesn’t stop just because you’ve made a bit of money. There are always opportunities to learn and grow, and as an entrepreneur, you should seize these opportunities when you can.
Reading books — especially ones based in your industry — will help you to learn more about your area, market, competitors and how to build on your initial successes. Business is a constantly evolving beast, and it’s best to read the latest literature to keep yourself in the loop and adapt to changes.
If you struggle to concentrate or find the time — or simply don’t find reading interesting — then try to find books that will spark your imagination. These could be inspiring female founder stories, proactive how-to guides, or just a book that has been written in a captivating tone of voice.
Learn to absorb new information, and understand how it can impact you, and how you run your business. Reading won’t just further your knowledge; it will help you to become more successful as a businesswoman. You can use what you’ve learned to implement change in your own practices.
By simply reading one good book a week — and having a willingness to learn — you are equipping yourself with valuable new skills that will further your career.
Look after your body with the right food
It’s such a cliché that as a busy entrepreneur, you live off a diet of coffee, cigarettes and whatever other people bring to your desk. Needless to say, this is not healthy or sustainable long-term.
Be sensible with your eating habits; start each day off with a healthy breakfast. Something like porridge and bananas will get your day as a busy female entrepreneur off to a good start. The slow-release complex carbohydrates that porridge and bananas contain provides you with steady energy levels throughout the morning, meaning you’re prepared for any intense client meetings.
Eating plenty of fruit and vegetables throughout the day will provide your body with all of the nutrients it needs to work properly — not just physically, but mentally too. Your diet can have a big impact on your brain’s function, so make sure you’re eating the right food.
Having a hectic lifestyle as a business owner means you should be providing your body with more goodness, not using your career as an excuse to skip meals.
Reflect on your week’s successes and failures
No one ever wants to look back at the things that went wrong during the week. It’s difficult, embarrassing and could have potentially lost you a client or a lot of money if things went really badly.
But the silver linings we can take away from the dark clouds of failure are the lessons we learn. By reflecting on mistakes and what went wrong, we can ensure that we don’t repeat them — and make sure things go better next time around.
Speak to any hugely successful entrepreneur and they’ll tell you how much they screwed up along the way. Things go wrong constantly, but an entrepreneur uses mistakes to learn and grow — as a person and as a business.
What exactly went wrong?
Whose fault was it? (be honest with this question and don’t place blame on your team or where it doesn’t belong!)
What could I have done differently?
What will I do next time instead?
Use these questions as a rough guide for dealing with failures and learning what you can from them.
Take the time to appreciate what went right with this week too. What was successful? What really worked? Take note, give yourself a pat on the back, and carry on doing these next week! Use these positives to set your goals for the week ahead.
Touch base with your team
If you’re in charge of any size team or business, then it’s important to touch base and find out how your staff are doing.
For a start, this helps you to catch any mistakes or miscommunications before they cause any damage.
Secondly, you want the people that work for you to love what they do and be invested in your business. If your employees love your business, they will put so much more energy into their work. You need to show them that you value their input and the work they do. How are you going to do this if you don’t know what is going on in their work life?
You don’t have to spend hours doing it; even just a weekly 10-minute one-on-one meeting will make a difference and open up channels of communication. Use these meetings as a chance to go over any updates, positives, negatives, and questions. It will make them — and you — feel more at ease, and make running your business much smoother.
Stay on top of changes in your industry
Advancements in technology and are making it increasingly easier for female entrepreneurs to find success. For example, ecommerce offers mobility and flexibility when it comes to starting your own business or exploring other ventures and opportunities. Whichever stage of life you’re at, your family situation, or your experience, ecommerce is a viable business model to explore.
There are a few resources and tools that you can use as a female entrepreneur to explore the many options that ecommerce offers: high-quality ecommerce communities, online businesses for sale, and acceleration programs for startups.
These resources won’t just help you to create business opportunities for yourself — they’ll also help you to stay aware of any new changes and news within your industry.
This is something you should do every week — if not every day. You cannot rest on your laurels if you’re an entrepreneur; whatever industry you work in, there will always be change, and you need to keep up.
New information will impact your to-do list and the direction you take your business in, so it’s always a good idea to do your research and stay updated for future opportunities (and things to avoid).
Even following inspiring women in your industry on social media can be incredibly useful, so take time to network!l
Take some time out
This last one is important: take some time out for yourself.
Whether it’s meditation, yoga, a bath or a workout session — whatever it is, have some “me time”. This is your chance to be selfish and do something purely by yourself — no employees, clients, family or partner present.
As a female entrepreneur, it can be difficult to switch off and properly relax. You spend all of your time spinning a million plates, and after a while, this just becomes normal life.
However, speeding around at a hundred miles an hour will eventually burn you out. It’s important to pencil in some down-time into your diary each week. Do something you love, reconnect with your passions and most of all, switch off from being an entrepreneur — even if it’s just for a small amount of time.
Running your own business can be difficult and exhausting. By doing these six things every week, you can help yourself to survive and thrive as a female entrepreneur.
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