Entrepreneurship is a contact sport. It cannot be learned from a book or in a classroom. The skills which underline entrepreneurship are largely learned first-hand through trial and error.
Moreover, you do not need to start a business to begin exercising your entrepreneurial muscles. There are several tasks you can perform that will allow you to train in the art of entrepreneurship while you are in school or working at a large organization.
The key effective rehearsing is to first establish the goals you want to achieve. If you don’t know which specific skills you want to improve, you will only get better them by accident.
Practice With A Purpose
“There is no glory in practice, but without practice, there is no glory.”
The following seven activities allow you to hone your entrepreneurial skillset without going all-in on a particular venture. Focus on the exercises that make you the most uncomfortable, rather than expending energy, enhancing your strengths.
Advise A Startup
“By learning, you will teach, by teaching, you will learn.”
You may be thinking, “I am not qualified to advise a startup. That’s why I am reading this article. I want to learn, not teach.” Great! There is no better way to learn than when you are forced to teach.
No matter where you are in your entrepreneurial maturation, there are many bright, eager folks who are a bit behind you. If you are in college, advise a High school entrepreneur club. If you are a recent college graduate, mentor college students. If you are a seasoned executive, work with a team of aspiring entrepreneurs.
Refine Your Personal Pitch
“The more you sweat in practice, the less you bleed in battle.”
-Richard Marcinko, Author
Networking is one of the entrepreneur’s most valuable skills. Practice your interpersonal talents by repeatedly entering a room of strangers with the goal of making at least five meaningful connections with people who can assist the startup you are advising.
You can easily avoid awkward pauses by weaving your Personal Pitch into your networking conversations. Your pitch should comprise the following three elements.
- Who you are — your interests, experiences, education, why you are so bloody interesting.
- Where you are going — your bombastic, fascinating entrepreneurial dreams.
- How you plan to get there — your short-term tactics and long-term strategies for turning your dreams into reality.
If networking makes you uncomfortable, as it does for many people, this is all the more reason to practice it. As with all skills, the better you get at networking, the less anxiety you will feel when you are on the practice field and, ultimately, once you get into the game.
If you are networking to assist a startup, you are advising; you can substitute the company pitch for your personal pitch.
“Don’t practice until you get it right. Practice until you can’t get it wrong.”
Look for areas in your workplace in which you can create something from nothing. Surprise your boss by launching a project that requires little to no resource, but has an outsized impact on your business.
Ask yourself, “If we hired an entrepreneur, what would they change about the way we do business?” then carryout whatever recommendations you devise. Don’t worry; you can apologize after the fact when you point to the positive impact your initiative had on your company.
If you are a student, do something bodacious within the confines of a club or student organization. Create a community service project, raise a small venture fund to capitalize on student companies – whatever you do, it should be bold and force you to call upon all of your startup talents.
Keep An Idea Journal
“Practice puts brains in your muscles.”
-Sam Snead, Professional Golfer
Launch A Side Business
“The difference between ordinary and extraordinary is practice.”
-Vladimir Horowitz, Pianist
A number of substantial companies have arisen from ventured started by people in school and who had fulltime jobs.
Even if your mini-venture does not morph into a substantial business, it will act as an effective practice in which court upon which you can enhance your entrepreneurial chops.
Don’t Throw Up, Speak Up
“You earn your trophies at practice; you just pick them up when you perform.”
Entrepreneurs must be able to influence and persuade others, often in a public setting. You can practice this talent by volunteering to give presentations at work, school, or in non-profit organizations. You can also join groups such as Toastmasters, whose explicit purpose is to help its members become more confident and able to public speakers.
Much like networking, if speaking in public makes you queasy, proactively practice your way to proficiency.
Get A Coach
“You play the way you practice.”
It is difficult to practice along. Not only is it a challenge to remain motivated, but it is also difficult to objectively identify which skills you are improving and where you should focus your practice time.
But apart from that Women Entrepreneurs face some challenges
Nowadays, women are taking across the globe of business and entrepreneurship, and we have the numbers to prove it too. The US alone has more than 12 million firms owned by women, employing around 10 million people, generating $2 trillion in sales since 2019.
A monumental 6 million firms are majorly owned by the women of color in the US, and one in five firms with a revenue of $1 million or more is woman-owned. The global rate of women entrepreneurship has been increasing even more quickly than that of the male entrepreneurs, with more than 200 million women worldwide starting a business since 2013.
The obvious strengthen in numbers of women in business is monumental, but so are the challenges we face. There is no gain, without any pain, and since many of our businesses will be serving other women business owners, it is essential to understand a very real gripes we have and know how to overcome them, not only for ourselves but to build a foundation of solutions for the communities of women we serve and future generations.
So, here are four common challenges female entrepreneurs face – and how to overcome them.
A battle to be taken seriously
It is a fact that some men have a fragile ego; our male-dominated society does not accept a female in a leadership role. It is a bitter but sad truth.
Our society looks at women as a weaker gender in many different aspects. When it comes to the funding, capital infusers face a hard time trusting a startup led by a woman.
To succeed in dealing with this problem:
- Be confident enough while demonstrating your idea.
- Execute your plan, create a powerful presentation, and invest more time on pitching, which is needed to display in front of the investors.
Getting funding for the startup requires an exclusive idea and more visibility. Getting the attention of investors is a critical task as the male entrepreneurs are likely to be ahead when it comes to networking. In today’s scenario, women give more priority to their safety and tend to have a conservative nature, which lacks in their motivation for socializing. Thus, it is safe to say that networking opportunities are organized around male interests.
To succeed in dealing this challenge:
- You can be open to bring up with some new ideas and be courageous enough to approach the female investors first hand.
- Women can scale up their visibility and reach within the other female entrepreneurs.
Limited Access to Funding
According to the report, 90% of the investors are male in the industry, and thanks to our biased system, male favors the ones within their tribe. Women with strong presentations fall behind the game. Where the other startups are granted capital, it is definite to feel demotivates, even after enduring efforts in the pitch.
To succeed in dealing with this issue:
- You can connect to various other capital ventures, which are backed by the female themselves.
- There are various types of bank loans being granted to the entrepreneurs having an idea that can help people.
- You can also try your luck in various entrepreneurs’ competitions.
Not Enough Support
To avoid the risk after investing in any startup or business, capital ventures always seek an active and dependable organization to put money in. While this issue is somewhat common between both men and women, but women still face it more frequently. When the employees have an urban mindset towards the women, it is hard to expect their 100% efforts and loyalty.
To succeed in dealing with this problem:
- Creating a team with the majority of women employees, the work environment will improve drastically, resulting in increased productivity.
- A powerful team within your tribe, after all, why should men have all the privileges?