When it comes to starting a business, the Internet can be a girl’s best friend. Online you’ll find out how to create an LLC (or another type of biz), secure appropriate tax forms, and register with your state or province.
But what does it take to prepare yourself mentally to become a business owner? How do you get into the mindset of becoming an entrepreneur? We interviewed a marketing coach and two business owners to answer these questions. Take notes!
Nicole De Larzac is a product development and marketing strategy consultant. She runs Nicole De Larzac Consulting Inc. and has worked for brands like Sprite, Nestea, Delissio Pizza, and Weight Watchers. She shares advice on how to prioritize learning as a potential business owner.
Q: Running a business is a learning process. Have you ever had a mentor, and do you suggest having one?
A: I’ve had several mentors and coaches in the past and I continue to have them. I wouldn’t be in the place that I am without them. Mentors can help you get to your destination much faster and with less struggle. They’ve been in your shoes and have gone past hurdles that you may be experiencing. They also hold you accountable for what you say you will do. In fact, I believe so much in mentors that I became one myself for other women who want to build a product business.
Q: What books would benefit someone who wants to prioritize their learning and growth?
A: There are so many. I strongly believe in personal development. Mindset is a huge part of business growth because, without a strong mindset, it will be harder to reach your goals. Here are some of my favorite books on creating a business mindset:
“The Success Principles” – by Jack Canfield
“The Slight Edge” – by Jeff Olson
“You are a Badass” – by Jen Sincere
“Everything is Figureoutable” – by Marie Forleo
Q: Are there any business courses you would recommend?
A: I personally love all of the content and marketing courses that the Digital Marketer puts out. Every business needs a good marketing strategy and they have everything from free content, a vault of courses, and an annual conference that is incredible.
Q: As a marketing strategy consultant you are your own boss. Have you ever reached out to other entrepreneurs for advice?
A: I have absolutely reached out to other entrepreneurs for their advice! I have been involved with masterminds, where a group of entrepreneurs gets together regularly to talk about their business challenges and work on accountability. I believe strongly in surrounding yourself with like-minded people because entrepreneurship can be lonely. Sometimes you just need someone else to talk to or to get out of your own head.
Learn What it Takes to Be a Leader
Our Founder and Executive Director Janeen Brown is a multipreneur and shares advice on how to lead a team.
Q: How do you know if you’re fit to be a boss or a leader?
A: I don’t like the word boss as it’s just a title. Being a boss is really just the owner of a business, providing direction on how to operate the business. A leader takes the time to understand their staff, their needs, expectations, and always makes sure they are showing their team the importance of leadership. Guiding and leading a group of people means taking the time to get to know everyone and ensuring you can lead them to a place of success and provide support when needed.
Q: What are some difficulties in leading a company?
A: When the company is struggling or having issues, you are the first person everyone comes to. Also, when first starting a business, long nights will become your best friend. You will be doing all of the necessary jobs to build your business until you have a trustworthy team.
Q: What qualities does a leader need to have?
A: They believe in their staff, attract people to the mission, seek to understand and listen, and do what they can with limited resources.
Learn How to Deal With Potential Difficult Situations and Self-Doubt
Donna Litt is CEO of Kiite, a company that operates a sales enablement platform and sales training program. She offers advice on how to stop doubting yourself and how to deal with setbacks and hardships a business may experience.
Q: How do you approach setbacks or roadblocks in your business?
A: When it’s your business, you only ever focus on the problems and see the gaps, and you can never grow fast enough or be good enough. I accept there’s no such thing as perfection, and that it’s up to me to make the decision of what’s good enough. This perspective helps me come back with energy when obstacles bring me down.
Q: How do you become confident in decision-making?
A: Work on asking questions, do your research, and read stories about the topic prior to forming conclusions and solutions. I can be more confident in my approach to decision-making when I’ve done a little extra work to try and anticipate what I might not know.
Q: Have you ever had a moment when you wanted to give up but didn’t?
A: I’ve had many moments where I wanted to give up. When things didn’t go my way.
I find it’s important to remember that everyone questions themselves, no matter what they do. No matter what I do, it’s up to me to strike the right balance. That’s the hard part: reminding myself to create a balance, and then forcing myself to do it.
To learn more about how to start a product-based business, check out Nicole De Larzac Consulting Inc. Read our blog for more articles on leadership. LeadHER, our virtual leadership academy, launches in February. Follow us @empowherto for updates.