Women in business – what do we have in common?

I’ve been reading so many posts on other fabby blogs about inspirational women lately. I aspire to be an inspirational woman when I grow up, and I was interested to see that, aside from a strong entrepreneurial flare, all the woman I admire share certain characteristics.

So I wondered if those characteristics are common in most women who choose to become their own boss? It’s a brave decision and I have great admiration for anyone who does it, especially those who do so in the face of adversity, as it takes an extraordinary amount of self belief. Very lately, I’ve started to see myself as a businesswoman, and it’s important for me to understand my positives, as I can be quite hard on myself sometimes (more on that below). I hope you guys don’t mind that I’ve used the plural – it’s a big step for me to do so! So I wanted to know what you guys think – do you think women in business have the following traits in common? Here’s how I see it:

What women in business do best

♥ We refuse to settle

The reason we’re in business for ourselves is that we refused to settle for anything other than our dreams. Maybe we wouldn’t settle for bad treatment from a boss we didn’t believe in, maybe we wouldn’t settle for a job we just liked that paid the bills. Ultimately, one of the traits that unites entrepreneurial woman is that we recognise that life is short and that nothing less than loving living and living what we love will do.

♥ We’re creative

I doubt you’ll ever find a successful businesswoman who isn’t creative. That applies particularly to the wedding world. All the fantastic women that I know in this industry have a vision, small or large. Whether that’s a vision for where their business and their life is headed, or an eye for detail, design, creativity and beauty, these women are able to create something from nothing and make it the most kick-ass thing ever.

♥ We’re perfectionists

This is both a positive and a negative. While it helps us to strive to make the best of our businesses, it also means we’re our own harshest critics. Sometimes we can be a little bit hard on ourselves and forget to give ourselves credit where it’s due. However, it means we have an eye for something when it isn’t right and we can, no, we have to quickly fix it. It can also make us a teeny bit difficult to work with at times, but we must also be team players to an extent because businesses can’t run in isolation.

♥ We follow our intuition

You know that gut feeling, when something’s right for you? You know that twang of warning when something really isn’t? We listen to that and we act on it. It tells us what we need when it’s all too easy to follow what we want. It prompts us to decisive and quick action. Our intuition is the most valuable tool that we have and we know that.

♥ We’re involved

Businesses are a rollercoaster journey – and we’re so involved that we follow that to its highs and its lows, and we really feel them. We’re intrinsically linked with what we do and we find it really hard to switch off, whether it’s taking a professional email too personally, worrying that we haven’t done enough or just waking up in the middle of the night brimming with ideas. We live and breathe our businesses whether we feel like it or not.

♥ We’re multi-taskers

We’re very good at having our fingers in lots of pies. Most businesswomen I know have several projects on the go – it’s a wonder they have any time for sleep! I have Under the Vintage Veil, my freelance PR work, the Under the Vintage Veil party, a number of photoshoots, plus more development projects for the blog on the go… oh, and the teeny tiny matter of my wedding in August! It’s a by-product of being an ideas person, those ideas spill over into reality and that can somehow leave us overwhelmed! But, we always pull through!

♥ We’re always trying to be better at what we do

Every artist, no matter how much of a novice or how great, should know that they can only improve. Businesswomen strive to learn, better their businesses and make their offering the best they have. It’s close to being a perfectionist, but it’s more of a thirst for knowledge and constant improvement.

♥ We’re tough

Running a small business isn’t easy. We have to be our own PA, our own admin, our own finance department, our own IT (well, I have in-house IT in the form of a fiancé thank goodness) our own legal team, our own support network and people don’t always get what we do. We have to roll with the punches and the ups and downs, but we always persevere. We and we alone are responsible for our work, so that means we’re liable for every complaint and every unhappy customer or reader. We miss time with friends and family, we put on our war paint and we talk with the best of them at parties and networking events. We manage crises and, even if we’re sitting in our PJs at 7pm writing a blog post (cough) we still manage to put a little glamour into the world.

I want women in business for themselves to read this and know what kind of a woman they are. Be proud of your achievements, be happy and be grateful for the strength of character to do what you do. This week, I’ve learned to be proud of myself, to hold myself tall and to no longer shrink from my dreams – and I hope everyone reading this who has a passion for what they do starts to feel the same. Big love everyone! 

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