Challenges and Advice for Women-Owned Business

Today, more women than ever choose to become entrepreneurs, forging their own path in a broad range of competitive industries. While they’ve made great strides in building successful brands, significant challenges remain for women-owned business. Limited funding, gender biases, and often hard-to-find government support are just a few barriers that keep women from reaching their highest level of success.

If your woman-owned business faces these or other challenges, you’re not alone. In this post, we share advice on overcoming your unique obstacles and explain why joining a professional women’s group like NAWBO Southern Nevada can make your entrepreneurial journey less lonely.

Obstacles a Woman-Owned Business Often Faces

When you first launch your business or brand, you’ll likely find yourself face-to-face with significant challenges like:

  • Family not understanding you run a “real” business or referring to your company as “your little business.”
  • Feeling the need to explain yourself as a woman-owned business.
  • Going head-to-head with male competitors who’ve been in business much longer.
  • Convincing conventional organizations and corporations that you deserve a seat at the table.

For many entrepreneurial women, finding a work-life balance seems impossible. They feel they need to be constantly available and are often reluctant to release control and bring in other capable women to help them succeed.

Recommendation: Forget finding “balance.” Instead, see the process as a “harmony,” and find other women you trust to complement and enhance your goals.

The Money Game

The biggest challenge women entrepreneurs face is funding. Seventy-two percent of business loan applications are made by male-owned businesses! Men just naturally apply for more business loans than women, and it’s because they believe they deserve the funds.

Women, as a rule, are more prone to make do with what they have and find a way to succeed on a lean budget. And they often continue to treat their brand like the hobby it was before they decided to turn it into an income-generating business. However, that mentality limits your expansion chances, as funders don’t see you as a “serious” businessperson.

Recommendation: Educate yourself on why debt is not necessarily a bad thing when starting a business and then start making the ask for funds as much as men do!

Face Fear Head-On

It can be lonely launching a business. And loneliness often generates feelings of fear. Staring down fear is much easier when you educate yourself on what it means to run a business. For instance, you should understand:

  • What customer-centered branding is
  • Know your strengths and your weaknesses
  • Where to look for resources like funding and support organizations like NAWBO Southern Nevada
  • How to build your squad or network – consider finding a mentor who has been there and done that

Recommendation: Feel the fear and do it anyways.

A final piece of advice for taking your woman-owned business to the next level: don’t try to be everything to everyone. Stay in your lane, put a stable infrastructure in place, and focus on how you plan to scale.

By joining NAWBO Southern Nevada, you get to tap into a community of like-minded trailblazers and industry leaders who provide the support and encouragement needed to grow a successful business. Visit our membership page to learn more!