Women have come a long way in establishing their rights. They’ve struggled to break the barriers society has pushed on them and to break out of the old ways in which they have been personified.
In fact, women play a major role in all facets of business, politics and religion in our country today — and they have done so on the backs of perseverance and never giving up. It’s the tenacity of a few that changed the game for the masses, and if you are acquainted with one of these women, you should thank them.
For this article, I talked with empowering businesswomen Amanda Boleyn, Jules Schroeder, Virginia Salas Kastilio and Laurence Bradford. These women will share the responsibility you have as a woman — and the encouragement you can receive as a man — building a business with what you have.
1. Overcoming failure in business.
Unconventional Life founder Jules Schroeder leads a movement to empower millennials to create a life by their own design through her international business accelerators. You learn from successful leaders who have left behind the 9-to-5 for a life they love.
While speaking with Schroeder, it was evident that failure doesn’t care what sex you are. For business owners who don’t understand the bigger picture of their company goals, failure can be more prominent. Especially when it comes to managing team members. But you can combat the issue. “If one of my team members consistently fails to follow through on their work commitments, I’ll meet with them 1 on 1,” Schroeder said. “I like to approach the conversation from a place of care and curiosity, where I seek to understand what’s going on in the broader picture of their life.”
Failure within your team can lead to lack of being personal or not sharing your vision with your members. Failure can happen in different areas of your business, and it is an idea in which you cannot fight. Schroeder says admitting that failure is simply part of the process to greatness.
When it comes to overcoming failure, Virginia Salas Kastilio understands it takes perspective. Kastilio is the founder of Gini TV which helps businesses build influence and online awareness. Kastilio has been named the top female Snapchat influencer in the world and has been showing her perspective to large organizations like the BBC and NASDAQ.
Every business and opportunity you are faced with comes with the experience you need to succeed for your next plan. Even if it didn’t work last time, Kastilio teaches in order to overcome failure, you need to gain perspective from the circumstance. In other words, failure should make you stronger. Failure is imminent in any business, but it’s always the people who learn about themselves whomake the most of overcoming the situation.
Brands that embrace failure and realize the process is a stepping stone and not a stumbling block are going to empower their future and solidify their business with their team and their audience.
If failure is included as part of the context — for any game that you’re playing or business you’re creating — then it becomes welcome, which allows it to not be so significant. Don’t fight failure, but welcome it through the new thoughts and ideas which can come from it.
2. Overcoming hurdles in business.
If you’re currently involved in building a business to create your perfect dream job, you have probably already faced some high hurdles. They can seem impossible to get over.
Laurence Bradford, creator of the Learn to Code With Me blog and podcast, is empowering men and women alike across social media — one of which is a special Facebook group of 12,000+ members. When I spoke with Bradford, she said one of the hardest hurdles to overcome in building your business is finding more time. You already know that time is the only thing you can’t control in your business or life. You can however, manage your time wisely. For some business owners, this idea eludes them completely, which is why a lot of founders lose faith and give up. Bradford suggests prioritizing what really matters for your business and taking control of tasks and responsibilities in this aspect.
Another hurdle in business can be the dreaded “self-doubt” thoughts which can come and go as your business advances and diminishes with the trends and economy. To empower yourself and create opportunities to jump over this obstacle, you always need to have a positive mindset within yourself.
This comes with having faith in your business, the product it offers and how you approach your clients. No one wants to be included with another person who is always down on themselves. Take some free time and read. Listen to encouraging podcasts from people who have been where you’ve been. Learn what others have done to succeed, and find how you can replicate this process by putting your own spin on the solution. Self-doubt can lead to a high hurdle, and you don’t want to jump that every day.
Lastly, Bradford suggests having a consistent feeling of being worth what you’re asking your customers and/or clients for. If you already know you’re work is essential to a specific niche and understand the price points in the market, don’t be afraid to ask for the money. This exhumes confidence in your brand and leans toward the self-doubt attribute. If you think you’re worth it, your customers will too.
3. Overcoming lack of action in business.
When it comes to building your successful business model there is an innate responsibility to want to be accepted in everything you try to do.
I spoke with Amanda Boleyn, founder of She Did It Her Way podcast. Boleyn’s sales training and empowerment influence has shifted mindsets and changed the behavior of more than 10,000 people in business. Boleyn has worked with top companies like AT&T, JPMorgan, Weight Watchers and Intel to help change strategy and influence employees.
“Women in business are more tapped into the possibilities of what could be and emotions that feel like fear and doubt,” she said. “While women may have this beautiful gift of insight, I believe we could allow it to talk ourselves out of taking action.”
The lack of action in your business can mean the difference between creating something which can help others and doing nothing. Emotional insight, while a great attribute to own, can either work for you or against you as you try to run your business.
Whether you’re a man or a woman, you have probably faced the dilemma of deciding on a risky step for your business. Humans are hardwired to take the path of least resistance, no matter what decision they’re faced with making. No one can understand the effects of taking action on a strategy which didn’t look like it was going to pan out, but after they completed it, they realized it revolutionized their business.
In a sense, you are working against your nature when it comes to taking risks. Risky decisions hold hands with failure and when one cannot measure success from the experience of another, it really comes down to their innate gut feeling and their power to make the hard choice anyway.
To empower your business model to succeed, you need to be taking action. These women aren’t advocating something foolish which would flush your business down the drain either. They are trying to share the facts of overcoming your own mind in order to execute what is already meant to be a successful business plan for your company.
Think about all of the great companies — Microsoft, Apple, Virgin. All of these individuals stepped out on that thin ice and performed something out of their comfort zone. However, it wasn’t that they didn’t fail. As I said already, failure rides on the back of risk. You will never know until you try it, and that’s the idea.
Let’s not look at this article in terms of sex. If you’re a business owner, you’ve got to empower yourself before you can empower your business to succeed. In order to do this you must face the trials ahead with gusto and fervor, and learn to apply these three self-help tips to your business model.
6 Fatal B2B Sales Mistakes You Must Avoid
B2B sales can be incredibly rewarding and lucrative — if you know what you’re doing. Unfortunately, most salespeople in this field make the same few mistakes again and again. When everyone around you is making the same missteps and blunders with B2B selling, it can be extremely difficult to know how to fix your approach.
If you’re looking to overhaul your strategy for B2B sales so you can start to crush your competition, it’s time to start actively avoiding the most common B2B sales mistakes out there today. Here are the six fatal B2B sales mistakes you’re probably making:
1. Selling to low-level buyers.
It may be easier to get in front of buyers and purchasing managers than C-suite prospects, since you never have to deal with a gatekeeper in order to reach them. But those low-level buyers don’t have the power — or the budget — to tell you “yes.” In fact, they’re only really good at telling salespeople “no.” You won’t make money selling to low-level buyers in B2B sales, so make a commitment to seek out high-level decision makers who can actually say “yes” to what you have to offer their businesses.
2. Highlighting your product’s features and benefits.
There was a time when prospects cared about the features and benefits of your product. But they simply don’t anymore. Prospects today only care about the results and outcomes you can create in their world. More specifically, they want to know how you can solve their key challenges and deepest frustrations. Instead of highlighting your product’s features and benefits when selling to businesses, focus on specific outcomes your product or service can help your prospects achieve.
3. Giving proposals with only one option.
One of the biggest mistakes salespeople make in B2B sales is putting together single-option proposals. There are two major problems with these proposals. First, they don’t provide any context, which compels prospects to shop around to determine the value of your solution. Second, customers who really want to invest in a premium option will be limited to a lower-tier solution. Instead, provide a three-option proposal — ranging from the lowest end option that will still solve their problem to a higher end option with the most value — to boost your average sale size and the number of deals you close.
4. Relying solely on the phone and internet.
There’s been a big movement in B2B sales towards selling online and on the phone. In some cases, this can be efficient and helpful, but if you’re selling an expensive, high-end product or service that requires a serious investment, you simply can’t skip out on meeting face to face. Hop on a plane if that’s what it takes to sit across from a valuable prospect. You’ll increase your close rate many times over, and being able to close big deals at huge companies is well worth the cost of travel.
5. Failing to clarify your value proposition.
Every time a B2B prospect asks what exactly it is that you do, you should have a quick and rehearsed response that succinctly describes the value you create. Clarify, script out, and memorize your value proposition. This is the only part of your sales presentation you have to memorize, so there’s really no excuse for hazy, rambling answers to this question.
6. Rushing to offer deals and discounts.
Low prices only attract bad prospects in B2B sales. Your ideal customer cares about value, not price, so quit offering deals and discounts. It only lowers your value in the eyes of your prospects. Instead, focus on the value you create, and be proud to offer the premium solution on the market. This attitude will attract the type of customer who values you for years to come.
Which of these mistakes have you been making in B2B sales? How will you correct your mistakes and start crushing your sales goals? Check out this free Ultimate 3-Step Prospecting Call Template for more powerful sales advice.
19 Tips to Immediately Improve Your Writing (Infographic)
Communication is key when it comes to success in any field, but especially as an aspiring entrepreneur. Getting an idea up and running requires clear and concise writing skills, whether you’re composing emails or creating presentations.
By honing business writing, entrepreneurs can boost workplace efficiency and productivity, while also building a solid reputation. Luckily, you can improve your writing almost instantaneously with some small tips and tricks, from making time to plan to using more verbs.
Check out the Instructional Solutions infographic below to learn how to polish your writing skills today.
The First Woman to Head a Hollywood Movie Studio Shares the One Thing You Need to Succeed
Over nearly 30 years, Sherry Lansing helped bring more than 200 films to life, including Academy Award winners Forrest Gump, Braveheart, and Titanic. Lansing was the first woman to head a major film studio when she was appointed president of 20th Century Fox in 1980. She was named chairman and CEO of Paramount Pictures in 1992. Today, she is the founder and CEO of The Sherry Lansing Foundation and a co-founder of Stand Up To Cancer. In her one-on-one with Jessica Abo, Lansing discusses her career, her foundation, her No. 1 piece of life advice and why she allowed Stephen Galloway of The Hollywood Reporter to write her autobiography: Leading Lady: Sherry Lansing and the Making of a Hollywood Groundbreaker.
Watch more videos from Jessica Abo on her YouTube channel here.
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