As a Woman Business Owner, Where Did You Get Your Gumption?

Courage, guts, nerve, bravery, common sense, good sense, horse sense. That is what I get when I put my mouse over the word 'gumption' and right click.

Do you have gumption? How did you get it?

I have no doubt that you have gumption. You would have to have it if you own your own business. Women entrepreneurs, (and you men also) take a risk; take a leap of faith, to do what you do.

It's much easier to just get a pay check every other week with insurance benefits than to do what you do. You are brave.

I know this may sound like a crazy question, but where did that come from for you?

I never would have even thought about this myself until this weekend when I was skiing.

My 27 year old daughter and I were swaying wildly on the chair lift. Seriously, it was crazy and a bit scary but we were laughing. Then we saw the people below us who were skiing and the wind and snow was howling around their feet. You actually couldn't even see their feet and when we went down the slope you couldn't see ours either.

The thing is I was asking her why do you think we all do this craziness? We spend a ton of money to ski for 3 days, our faces are sunburned and wind burned (despite goggles and neck warmer up to our noses) and we can't see 5 feet in front of us. But we keep going up more chair lifts and making more runs down. Wow. Kind of like owning your own business. The way I figured I got the gumption and my daughters have the gumption to step away from the crowd and do something brave. Granted, there were 15,000 of us skiing that day but when you figure all the people in Colorado and around, that is a mere pittance.

I was taught to be independent and self sufficient, to own my own business as my father did, and not to worry if the wind is blowing your chair lift around, just hang on and go for the ride.

I suspect you all learned in your childhood or beyond to take the risk, to be brave and grab that brass ring.

Where did that come from for you? And if you have children are you teaching them to be brave and take risks? I don't mean in a crazy manner but in a way that helps them stand out, be different and make a stand.

Make a stand? Yes, I mean that. I take a stand by saying that women after 50 need to take care of themselves and not depend on others (i.e. men) to take care of them.

You need to know that you will be fine on your own and you don't have to count on others to take care of you. Women in retirement fair very poorly, much worse than men. The 'bag lady' syndrome is alive and well even with middle class and above women.

Top 10 Gifts For The Woman Business Owner In Your Life!

With women starting businesses at a rate almost four times that of men, odds are you have a special someone in your life who is a woman entrepreneur. Starting a business is a life-changing effort and that is worthy of support and encouragement.

Here are ten gift ideas that say, "I believe in what you are doing, and I want to support your efforts."

10. Gift Card from an Office Supply Store

From presentation covers to electronics, every business needs top-notch supplies.

9. Magazine, Book, or e-Book Gift Certificate

New ideas are the lifeblood of any business. There's always something that can be improved on, and advice from the experts is always welcome.

8. Networking Event Ticket

Having a solid network is critical for any business owner. Meeting new people - and particularly other entrepreneurs - is a strategic component of building a solid network. Give her the chance to explore a new group of individuals over breakfast or during an evening networking event!

7. Spa Gift Certificate

Every woman needs a little time for pampering. Women tend to spend most of our time taking care of other people, so it is nice to have a chance to take care of ourselves.

6. Maid or Concierge Service

Give the gift of peace-of-mind by freeing up some of her valuable time.

5. Professional Organizer

Sometimes, staying on top of the paperwork is hard when you are busy running the operation. Having someone come help set up a system for organizing this critical area of the business is a real blessing!

4. Sponsor an Ad

Help her bring in more business! With a little legwork, you can find the right publication to help her reach a broader group of potential clients, whether it is online or in hard-copy format.

3. Tech Support

There is nothing more frustrating than having computer problems when you have a deadline looming. Giving her a couple of hours from an on-site tech support company means she has someone she can call on in an emergency or to prevent one altogether.

2. Coaching

No matter how well-established her business, getting a fresh perspective is important. Whether it's marketing or business development, coaching is a fantastic gift that helps her step back from running daily operations for a while to focus on direction, goals, and planning.

1. Business Image Consultation

Whether she is standing at a podium or sitting at a baseball game, personal presentation is vital. In business, you can meet potential partners and clients anywhere at any time.
Give her the gift of self-confidence and security knowing that the first impression she makes is right for the business she is in, and for the people she is dealing with. It's a gift that lasts a lifetime.
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