Recently I viewed a TED Talk discussing the reasons why female entrepreneurs tend to receive less funding than their male counterparts. As a female entrepreneur, I connected with the ideas outlined and saw great hope for women moving forward if they can learn to speak in terms of gain instead of losses by using promotion language (View the TED Talk).
As I was reflecting on this TED Talk, I began to wonder about myself and my business. Do I focus on framing my responses with promotion in mind as outlined by Dana Kanze? Am I worth an investors time or money? You’re damn right I am. And you can be too. Let’s talk about why you are or how you can become an investment-grade entrepreneur.
As an entrepreneur, you will face many challenges. These will range from product issues to funding problems and more. There will be times when others will see your vision, drive, and potential. There will also be times when the only one with the vision is yourself. Regardless of whether others are willing to invest in you, the best investment you can make is in yourself.
Here are some great ways to invest in yourself:
- Read a book – Reading leads to knowledge, insights, and inspiration. The more you read, the better equipped you will be to solve problems creatively and inspire others.
- Find a mentor – A mentor is a guide, a teacher, and a friend. It’s someone you can use to bounce ideas off, and who will help lead you to solutions when you feel lost. Find a mentor who will help you be a better version of yourself.
- Join a professional group or organization – Find a group of peers in similar situations. I’ve gained incredible insight and growth from my time in YPO (Young Presidents’ Organization). By associating with other people in similar stages of entrepreneurship, you can learn and grow together instead of feeling lost and alone.
These are just a few of the many ways that you can invest in yourself. I love the quote from serial entrepreneur, Matt Carriker:
“Don’t let the world pass you by. Do one thing today that makes your tomorrow better than your yesterday. Just one thing, even if it’s tiny.”– Matt Carriker
You don’t have to do all the things at once, start with just one thing. Do one thing today that will make tomorrow better.
As you take the time to invest in yourself, you will find confidence and poise that will help you succeed in your entrepreneurial pursuits. Your critical thinking and problem-solving skills will improve. You will be a better entrepreneur, and a better you. Let’s be real; you can’t expect others to invest in you if you aren’t willing to invest in yourself. Stay thirsty my friends.