In 2018, small businesses is never a cakewalk, especially for women in the still male dominated world of business. Even with the development of technology, obstacles such as funding and inability to find the right employees still hinder the growth of small businesses.
Despite these challenges, 2018 has seen the surge of female entrepreneurs in small businesses. Women have proven themselves a force to be reckoned with, despite the field being dominated by men up until now.
In the current male dominated climate, it is often difficult for women to communicate with superiors in their workplace, as these are usually men who treat them flippantly. This has caused many women to become their own bosses through entrepreneurship. Below are just some of the obstacles faced by female entrepreneurs and how they overcame them.
1. Challenging the gendered market
In many cases, female business owners haven’t been taken as seriously as their male counterparts. Melanie Ocana can testify to this. Being the Co-owner of Rustico Tile and Stone, a company that manufactures and distributes handmade tiles, the assumption is usually that the business belongs to her husband. However, her husband is always swift in reinforcing that her role is greater in the business by drawing attention to her contributions.
She’s determined that only persistence will change the old school notions that women cannot lead or do as well as men in business. After all, the contribution to the surge in small businesses in 2018 as per the NFIB Small Business Optimism Index cannot be all male.
2. Rebuilding a hacked website
The Wing Girl Method — a motivational website and the brainchild of Marni Kinrys, faced the disastrous situation of getting hacked. Since Marni relied strictly on organic traffic, the hack caused her to lose many years of work. However, she tackled the hack by seeking non-monetary assistance from her audience through her podcast as well as online pleas for financial assistance to get the site back up and running.
The response was overwhelming and she managed to accumulate traffic close to what she used to have, without paying a dime on online advertising.
3. Creating a strong employee base
Diane Joyal the founder of Bowerbird Flowers, a floral design studio, faced the challenge in finding talent for her store. She observed that having a strong employee base with a good workflow was not an easy task. However, with a reliable and intelligent full-time employee and two who were working part-time, she managed to deal with the tasks at hand.
Diane is of the belief that strong communication with employees is always essential for overcoming challenges. Her next goal is to acquire new clientele using unexplored revenue channels.
4. Flying solo?
Running a business alone can be an enormous task. If your business mostly relies on its online presence, your preferred mode for monetary transactions will be online transfers. In that case blockchain technology has various applications for a small business. Kati Schmidt, the creator and owner of Pina Colada, a group dating website, finds it most empowering running her business by herself. It gives her a sense of ownership, but this comes with its own challenges. Going solo when managing a business can come with extreme loneliness.
Her advice to new entrepreneurs is that they must recognize their limitations and look for support when necessary. She believes that even in the course of running your business “leaning on your friends and family for support is also important”.