Feeling the burn? Here’s how to overcome 3 big challenges facing female solopreneurs!
Women have made giant strides as entrepreneurs, but let’s be real: We still face plenty of challenges that our male colleagues don’t typically have to deal with.
Let’s talk about some of the daily challenges we face as female entrepreneurs — and how to kick them to the curb.
Raising Capital Can Be Tough
Despite the fact that female-managed businesses tend to have more engaged, productive employees, it’s harder for women to obtain start-up capital. The reason?
Well… There’s no one-size-fits-all answer, but many venture capitalists tend to support startups run by people with whom they feel they have a lot in common. Those of us with less traditional business backgrounds may suffer. The upside is that female investors are more likely to invest in female-run businesses — but that accounts for only 6% of US firms.
The Solution: Make a kick-butt business plan and know your worth. Spend some dedicated time nailing down your unique offering and how it will improve the lives of others. Practice, practice, and practice your pitch. Then embrace your inner bulldog when seeking the capital you need to make your dream happen. Refuse to take no for an answer, and eventually, the world will have to say yes.
Work/Life Balance — What’s That?
It’s nothing new for women to work outside of the home, but in spite of this, it’s often assumed that we’ll take on the lioness’ share of housekeeping and child rearing.
In this article in the Wall Street Journal, 25 male CEOs described their work-life balancing act. Several CEOs acknowledged that their wives bore the brunt of the household workload, even when both spouses were career-oriented. Said one CEO: “It’s very hard if you are both in key power roles. Something’s gotta give because of the demands.” Too often, for women, that “something” that gives is our focus on our businesses.
The Solution: The good news is it doesn’t have to be like that! Simply deciding that your business will be a priority can make a huge difference in how you allocate your (sometimes extremely limited) time and energy. Regardless of who’s on this journey with you, keeping the home fires burning has to be a team effort. Setting expectations is key. Change your mindset and repeat after us: Your business is not expendable.
The Dreaded Burnout
Burnout happens to the best of us, but for female entrepreneurs, it can be easy to get caught up in juggling fifty tasks and/or wearing forty hats. When you’ve worked too hard for too long without any kind of breather, burnout can sneak up on you.
Eventually you look around and suddenly realize you’ve completely run out of energy. But that’s just the lucky ones. For some, the burnout leaves irreparable damage. And since our obligations at home aren’t going away (nor do we want them to), the first casualty may be our businesses.
The Solution: Don’t be afraid to ask for help from your entrepreneurial support team (your family, your babysitters, your professional experts, and more). Get help in the office AND out of the office for maximum benefits. Get some help — and then keep on keeping on!
Business ownership used to be a boys’ club, but that’s no longer true. These days, more than 9 million businesses are owned by women and we think that’s pretty awesome!
These are just 3 obstacles that female entrepreneurs face on the regular, but what are some challenges you’ve faced? How did you overcome them?
About Emily D. Tisdale, Founder & CEO
Meet the brains — and heart — behind LEAP for Women. Emily is LEAP’s guiding force, committed to supporting women entrepreneurs at every stage in their journey.
She loves LEAP because:
A resident of Indiana, Emily prides herself on being a transplanted Hoosier and enjoys watching Colts football and spending time with her husband and their two children.