Okay, ladies. It’s time for some girl talk.
Launching a business can be hard work. Nearly 80% of new businesses fail during their first five years of operation, so the odds are clearly against you. Businesses fail for various and different reasons, but it is particularly heartbreaking when a business fails, not because it sells a bad product or because it can’t find customers, but because the owner has difficulty making tough decisions and having uncomfortable conversations necessary for the survival of the business.
It is not my intention to make generalizations, but in my experience at least, I’ve noticed that many of the female entrepreneurs I encounter struggle with this.
The sad truth is that, most often, “nice girls” don’t get rich. In fact, I’ve watched many businesses shrivel up and die because the owner let her emotions get in the way of making the right decisions for her business. This difficulty manifests itself in various ways.
Take a look.
Going into business with an irresponsible friend
It appears that behind many, a flailing businesswoman is a scatter-brained best friend/business partner who just won’t pull her own weight. Don’t rest the fate of your business on the shoulders of a “friend” who, though you love her very much, has a track record of being unreliable and unpredictable. One of the easiest ways to lose one of your most cherished relationships and lose a ton of hard-earned cash at the same time is to go into business with an irresponsible friend.
Failure to document agreements
If you decide to go into business with a close friend, you may want to prepare a contract that articulates the terms and conditions of your business relationship. Too often, businesswomen rely blindly on ambiguous promises made by loved ones. If you enter into business relying on vague expectations, you may eventually find yourself sorely disappointed when a friend fails to deliver on a promise. Worse still, your business could suffer serious damage as a result. It’s best to document all promises in binding legal agreements.
Being “soft” on those who fail to deliver
There is an old proverb that says that when you are climbing a mountain, don’t try to carry other people on your back because the extra weight will only slow you down. Instead, climb the mountain yourself and once you’re at the top, throw down a rope to help them up. You may benefit from applying this proverb in business. Some businesswomen are saddled by the belief that it’s their job to “save” everyone around them. Sometimes, however, this belief can impair your business.
For example, you may decide to be lenient with a client who is unable to pay their invoice on time, but if giving the client a break sabotages your ability to pay your own bills when due, it may be wise to re-evaluate that decision.
For more information, you may contact Kelly Francis at (514) 802-7736 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Disclaimer: This article merely gives readers an overview of the issues discussed therein and is not legal advice. Please do not take action based on this article alone without first seeking the legal counsel appropriate for your specific situation.