More and more women are starting a business. According to a 2020 study by UENI, 32.3% of UK businesses are female-owned, a huge increase on 4 years ago when just 17% of founders were women. Women’s business groups and networking events are also on the rise, and with more and more studies showing that women who collaborate in business are more successful, there has never been a better time to support other women in business.
Laura Cloke is a Career Fulfilment Coach who helps women to create careers they love. Since starting her coaching business in 2019 Laura has been supported by some amazing women and also been able to support lots of female-run businesses too. These are 5 ways Laura believes you can support other women in business.
A word of mouth recommendation for a business is the most valuable form of marketing, and it doesn’t cost you anything to do it. People trust people they know, so when you tell your friends and colleagues about a business your word has more weight than any advert or piece of marketing content. If you have worked with or know a great business, then tell other people about them, write a review, provide a testimonial or give them a recommendation on LinkedIn.
Buy their products and services
There are so many things to do when you are running a business and you can’t do them all. Whether that is designing your website, doing your accounts or scheduling your diary, there comes a point when you need to pay other people to help you with your work. When you are outsourcing your work seek out other women-owned businesses to support you.
Become a mentor
You don’t need to be a multi-million-pound business owner to be able to have something to offer. A mentor only needs to be a few steps ahead or be able to offer advice and guidance on a specific area. It is also a great way to build your network and your mentee may have a skill they can mentor you on, so you get some support back in return.
Share your story
Running your own business can be a lonely experience. The highs are amazing, but the lows can be tough, especially if you think you are the only one having a tough time. Sharing your story can help other people to realise that they are not alone. Telling your story and realising how much you have achieved and all of the obstacles you have overcome can also be really affirming.
Use your influence
If you are in a position of privilege you can look around the room and ask yourself, who is being left out and how can I ensure they become part of the conversation. Are the panels you are being asked to speak on diverse? Are the venues and events you are attending accessible? When you are in the room you have more power to make a change than those who are excluded, and you can help to break down the structural barriers that get in the way of many women succeeding.