It’s hard enough to remain relevant in a tight market for any business owner, but being in the business world as a female can be even more challenging. Moreover, the reality of males dominating business space may not end anytime soon. As it stands now, the activity rate of females in business stands at 16.6%, while men obviously have the higher percentage. With all these challenges, it’s beneficial to do your best to avoid some common business blunders. Here are a few helpful pointers.
Poor Professional Image
An impressive professional image is a definite plus in the business world. As a woman, you have even more reason to build and improve upon your professional image. Unfortunately, few women realize the huge potential they lose from not paying much attention to the details of this critical area.
First of all, your professional image is not entirely about your physical appearance. Instead, it is the set of qualities that come together to give others an impression of your competence and character. These qualities can be detected from your tone of voice, firmness of your handshake, eye contact, and even the topics of your conversation.
In other words, these qualities contribute to that most important first impression others have of you upon contact. According to image experts, practicing in front of a mirror can make a tremendous difference if you lack confidence or question how others see you. Practice allows you to see how you look when talking to others. It can also be an opportunity to improve your eye contact, body language, and gestures. You also have the option to hire a professional image expert to offer guidelines.
Do also consider your professional online image. This includes your website, social media accounts, and any relevant online activity that others can easily trace to you. While at it, do not forget to create cohesion in your online image.
Trying to Fit into Society’s Expectations of Women
Apart from the personal pressure you put on yourself as a woman, society’s expectations further compound it. For example, women are expected to be mild-mannered, soft-spoken, and willing to conform to societal norms…primarily programmed by men.
If you think these attitudes can help you excel in the highly competitive entrepreneurial space, you might be sadly disappointed. Moreover, if you desire to become aggressive and strictly uncompromising in the business world, you might be wrong again.
Undoubtedly, these external pressures can make you swing to either side of the divide. However, successful businesswomen, who have been there, say it is having a fair and balanced mix of both sides that warrants the best outcome. Some business situations may require you to go all out with guns blazing, while others can demand the exact opposite. Therefore, being flexible and adaptable is a happy medium that also teaches you more along the way. You will find it helpful to learn from successful female entrepreneurs like Krissy Jones to avoid fitting in a mold.
Making Business Decisions Emotionally
As women, we tend to be more emotional than men. Though this is how we are made, it tends to not serve as well in some business situations. You may have already discovered that, though your kind, emotions are worthwhile, some emotions and sentimentalities do not serve alone in business.
Emotions can cloud judgment and impair your ability to grasp business opportunities and the facts. It is necessary to also include a solid analytical perspective when decision making.