We read about female entrepreneurs every day and this is not a coincidence. These women’s journeys make great stories of success (or failure). The common stereotype says that being a successful female entrepreneur takes a lot – you need to have very good qualities and skills in order to succeed.
We don’t agree completely with this. Yes, having skills that people will benefit from and will pay for is important. But it is also true that you can start with the qualities and skills you have and develop them along the way.
We believe that there are other tools that can help you become a successful female entrepreneur, such as having a personal mission, dealing with fears and risks and adding a social element to your business, so we have included them in this chapter.
Qualities and skills
The ingredients to become an entrepreneur
To start an entrepreneurial project, whatever it is, certain qualities and skills are key. Some people have all of them, but more often you have only some. “No worries!”, it does not matter if you have all necessary skills or not, you can become an entrepreneur if this is what you want. Check out the qualities and skills of an entrepreneur that we have defined throughout these 2 weeks and get inspired!
It’s about knowing yourself and what you want and what you don’t want.
It’s about listening to yourself, your intuition and embracing your ideas.
It’s about the desire to improve. This means that you know the mistakes of your past and you have learnt from them.
It’s also about realizing which are your weaknesses and your strengths, and accept them while being willing to improve.
Be positive, motivated and persistent
A positive attitude is everything for a successful entrepreneur. To have a positive attitude means to believe in your plans and ideas with optimism.
This is important because if you are positive, people will be positive as well (mirror effect) and you’ll attract positive things.
Being positive is also a protection against negativity. It’s about the ability to see the good aspect in bad experiences, and learning from them, and make the best out of it, no matter what.
Trust your ideas, because only by looking at the bright side you’ll be able to develop them.
Overtake your fears, take the risk, be brave, persist.
“Just do it!” “Go for it!” “Work!” “Action!”
Being able to set goals and make a plan.
Problem solving attitude.
Being resourceful, which is being prepared to find creative solutions to sudden problems.
In fact, having a flexible attitude is really important.
Sharing ideas and being communicative
“Sharing is caring!”
During the youth exchange we had the pleasure to share our ideas, and thus learn from each other. On Day 3 we had a Startup Weekend Methodology session, where everyone had 30 seconds to share their ideas/fields to startup a project. Not all ideas were realised, but it felt great to hear what the other women dream about and get inspired.
Moreover, you can develop your idea even further if you share it with the right people, who can give you useful feedback or help you realise it. By talking to different kinds of people you will learn how they work and think, and what exactly they need. If you are able to understand them and their needs, you can easily define your project target group and address their needs.
Cooperation is important to run your business because by cooperating with different people, multiple skills and ideas come together. When everyone does what they are best at, it becomes easier to achieve the desired result.
When working together with other people, it is convenient to define roles and tasks to reach a better result.
Be open and receptive
It is good to think out of the box to identify what people or the market may need, and design creative and innovative solutions to any kind of problem.
It is helpful to be curious about the surrounding word, have a vision and recognize existing boundaries. In other words, it is important to be active, dynamic and study to understand the world and be more effective with your business idea.
This blog post is an excerpt from the Bees Inspired – A Hive for Female Entrepreneurs Booklet that was created by the participants of Bees Inspired: A Hive for Female Entrepreneurs during a 10-day youth exchange that took place in The Netherlands from 18 till 27 January 2017. It gathered 42 participants from 7 different countries and empowered them to learn from each other about female entrepreneurship. The project is funded by the Erasmus+ programme of the European Union.