When starting out in business, it can be easy to get overwhelmed by all of the amazing things you want to do. Where do you start? What's the best first step? And what should you do after that? All of the excitement can lead to inevitable confusion… but it doesn't have to! One of the quickest ways to be successful is to learn expert advice from the people who've already conquered what you're setting out to accomplish.
To help you laser focus in on what you need to be doing, we've rounded up some of the best expert advice and quotes for female entrepreneurs and ambitious women.
Expert Advice for Female Entrepreneurs and Ambitious Women
“We must have a theme, a goal, a purpose in our lives. If you don’t know where you are aiming, you don’t have a goal.” – Mary Kay Ash, founder of Mary Kay Inc.
“The size of your dreams must always exceed your current capacity to achieve them. If your dreams do not scare you, they are not big enough.” – Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, President of Liberia
“Whether you think you can, or think you can’t, you’re right.” – Henry Ford, founder of Ford Motor Company
“Failure is not the outcome. Failure is not trying.” – Sara Blakely, founder of Spanx Shapewear
“It’s almost always harder to raise capital than you thought it would be, and it always takes longer. So plan for that.” – Richard Harroch, venture capitalist
“I spend 90% of my time traveling around the world talking with women and women entrepreneurs and exploring the challenges to women starting, growing or scaling a business. What I’ve found is that the number one reason is the lack of confidence. The antidote to a lack of confidence is simply action. We take action when we have mentors.” – Ingrid Vanderveldt, founder of Empowering a Billion Women by 2020 (EBW2020) and Dell’s former entrepreneur-in-residence
“My advice to anyone with an idea for a startup would be to go ahead and start it. The more research you do up front as to how much work is involved and how much you need to learn could easily put you off. I had no idea when I first started Thing Industries, and I’m glad I didn’t! It’s much easier to tackle new tasks once you’ve already got things going.” – Bridie Picot, CEO of Thing Industries
“When I dare to be powerful, to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid.” – Audre Lorde, Civil Rights Activist
“Define your business and your brand and commit to it–everything you do should be consistent with your business’s identity. You simply cannot be all things to all people. This is especially important if you are starting a business with limited upfront capital. You may be tempted to do things outside of your scope in the interest of either driving business, or just paying the rent. That’s a very slippery slope that most entrepreneurs don’t take into consideration at the outset. You can end up stretching yourself thin, or providing mediocre service because it’s not what you do best. That said, I learned a lot about staying true to my product/service offerings and refraining from taking business that is not in my wheelhouse.” – Carrie Sindler, owner of GoodieBox Bake Shop
“Courage doesn’t always roar. Sometimes courage is the quiet voice at the end of the day saying, ‘I will try again tomorrow.'” – Mary Anne Radmacher, Author
“Don’t let what you don’t know scare you. There’s so much that we have taught ourselves. And there’s so much that you can learn if you have the passion to learn it. But you’ve got to be prepared to work. We look at each other and, combined, we’re putting in unspeakable hours – but every one of them is worth it because we love the business.” – Jennifer Murray, co-founder of Painted Fox Treasures
“Part of being an entrepreneur is being an innovator. So I encourage women to be the unstoppable force that makes the future what you want it to be. Pursue your passion and don't get deterred if it is in a historically male-dominated field. I was told early in my career that there aren’t many women executives in the entertainment industry, and that only made me want to move forward more. I knew merging entertainment and tech was the future, so I buckled down to learn everything I could about tech. Don’t wait for evolution, just evolve.” – Victoria Cairl, VP of Business Development at Show-Score
“Expect the unexpected, and whenever possible, be the unexpected.” – Lynda Barry, Cartoonist
“The best entrepreneurs do display certain psychological and character traits that are common to success stories in other fields — like self-discipline, grit and tolerance for risk — I would bet that the most successful among us tend to have even higher levels of those trails, supercharged by an optimism that psychologists would label delusional. To overcome the skeptics and naysayers, nearly all entrepreneurs need grit and a level of optimism that can seem delusional.” – Michael W. Sonnenfeldt, serial entrepreneur and founder and chairman of Tiger 21
What was your favourite piece of expert advice we shared above?
Tell us in the comments & leave a bit of your hard-earned expert advice for the next ambitious woman to benefit from! ❤️