Why it’s important for women to overcome their barriers to success
The theme at our last International Women’s Day event was breaking through the barriers that women experience in business.
We had deliberately planned a smaller event than usual which worked out well, as the theme wasn’t our usual positive success theme and may not have resonated with some micro-entrepreneurs and business owners.
Indeed just before the event I overheard someone say “I don’t benefit from learning events, as there is not much else to learn – I don’t seem to have the same problems or barriers as other women anyway.”
I agree that what is a barrier for one person isn’t necessarily a barrier for someone else, and a barrier can just be a perception too.
But recent research seems to have identified finance and confidence as the two main business barriers faced by many women starting up in business.
Let’s look at a super-confident businesswoman who doesn’t suffer from a lack of finance or funding. If she doesn’t want to learn anything new, does it mean she is perfect, or can’t get any better?
Or does it mean she could be suffering from complacency? Overconfidence can prevent us from seeing our blind spots, and that too can be a barrier.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not looking to create barriers where there aren’t any!
But why do you think successful and seemingly accomplished sports personalities, famous actors, or achievers in business still choose to have a mentor or coach? What is it they know that some of us don’t? They know that keeping on learning and in due course, overcoming even the tiniest remaining barriers can help you to win that Oscar or Olympic medal.
Take Mary Portas. Radio show host and Marketer Jean Wolfe and I discovered on her business show once that we are both huge fans.
Mary Portas regularly demonstrates on TV what she does best – challenging perceptions and breaking through barriers! She takes on new projects that offer huge learning opportunities for herself and the people she works with. Just think about her fashion designs – she is not a designer but someone who saw a huge gap in the market and went for it.
You may not be Mary Portas, or be in the business of winning Oscars. But learning to break through barriers in business will enhance your performance, become more visible, help you to clinch a bigger deal and propel you or your business to the next level.
Or you may win an Everywoman award like the senior director from a global technology firm who ran a mentoring session with me at a conference for women in technology.
So whatever your age and background, and whichever industry your business operates in, it is never too late to learn a few new things, break through the odd barrier and invest in a better you!
PS. If you would like to have a chat about your business, please email Ute Wieczorek-King to arrange a complimentary 30-minute mentoring session. Ute helps busy women to be visible, effective and profitable in business. You can connect with her on this site or via Twitter, the Success Network Community on Linkedin, or Success Network Recipes on Facebook. To sign up to her monthly newsletter, please fill in the form in the right hand column.
Copyright 2012-2015, Ute Wieczorek-King