It’s been proven that women launch businesses much different from their male counterparts and oftentimes for very different reasons. Call it unconventional, but women across the country are proving that it’s okay to launch in the feminine way.
What’s been discovered is that:
Women don’t want to sacrifice their desires for financial success. Women launch businesses first and foremost to enjoy a better lifestyle. They also want to express their creativity and enjoy the process of launching in whatever manifestation that means.
Networking comes natural to women. They’re constantly talking and meeting new people. They enjoy making connections. Relationships are a priority for women and they’re great at using those relationships to help move their ideas forward. Women rely on their connections to get information, seek advice and to have social interaction.
Women become emotionally attached to their creative projects. In other words, they fall in love with their ideas and making them happen. Similar to caring for children, women nature and tenderly care for their projects. They are extremely careful and guarded and find it difficult to give away equity in their businesses. Women find passionate personal fulfillment in their ideas and define themselves through their ideas.
Women do not typically invest time and energy into a project unless they have passion. Likewise, they are not willing to climb the corporate ladder for the promise of money or prestige. Many times women do not want to grow their business because they want to maintain balance and happiness in their lives and extreme growth can negatively impact this balance. In fact, many women list money or financial gain last on their priorities for starting their own business.
Multi-tasking is a women’s secret weapon. Because women tend to take on many things and are time constrained, they are completely comfortable and efficient at juggling the responsibilities of family, business and their personal interests. Have you ever seen a woman talking on the phone, cooking dinner and holding a baby in her arms (probably while also giving out tasks to the rest of the family)? Women want and crave everything in their lives and they are discovering (and gaining the confidence) that they can have it all. Women measure their success in these terms. Women also tend to have and enjoy multiple careers (all at once). With varied interests and that desire to “try everything life has to offer,” women are learning that it’s okay (and even good for them), to have multiple business interests and multiple business cards.
Women are oftentimes able to think in non-linear terms. Which means that they may not know exactly where they are headed when they start a project. At the same time, they are completely comfortable with that notion. Relying upon natural intuition, they move forward with a gut feel and see where it takes them.
And finally, women are unmistakably tenacious (think pregnancy and childbirth). Even if a woman has never given birth, those genetics are hard-coded into a women’s body, mind and spirit. Women work hard when they are inspired and won’t stop until a task is completed. Coupled with innate creative talents, a women business owner is a force to be reckoned with. For these and many other reasons, women are starting businesses at three times the rate of men. As a result, there are 11 million women-owned businesses in the United States and the number is growing. There’s no wonder the term “You go girl” resonates with women everywhere.
By Lynn Toomey, Ladies Who Launch Director, MetroWest/West Massachusetts adapted from the book, Ladies Who Launch, How to Live Your Dreams, and Love Your Life.