Have you seen the latest statistics for women-owned businesses?
- The US has 12.3 million women-owned businesses.
- US women-owned businesses generate $1.8 trillion a year.
- 40% of US businesses are women-owned.
- There are 114% more women entrepreneurs than there were 20 years ago.
Over the years the growing trend of hard-working female entrepreneurs, who also happen to be moms, has warranted the phrase “mompreneur”. Entrepreneur Magazine’s website even has a dedicated section just for mompreneurs.
Since this growing trend is found in the accounting profession as well, you may be considering being a CPA mompreneur or perhaps, you already are one. As a smart, driven CPA, choosing to go out on your own may make sense for various reasons.
With all the advice out there vying for your attention to help you market and grow your business, it can be difficult to figure out how to successfully navigate entrepreneurship. Even if you’re in the early stages of considering leaving your job and going out on your own, there are some challenges that CPA mom entrepreneurs need to consider.
This week I’m going to discuss three challenges for CPA mom entrepreneurs – failure to launch, failure to lead and failure to look up.
Failure to launch
When I hear the term “failure to launch” I can’t help but think of the Matthew McConaughey movie where he plays a 35-year old man, happy to stay at home and be waited on by his mother. The sad truth is that his parents had to hire a beautiful woman, played by Sarah Jessica Parker, to trick him into leaving his comfort zone.
Although the term “failure to launch” is often used to describe the difficulties some young adults face when transitioning into the next phase of development, entrepreneurs can also experience it. Leaving the comfort of your current job or expanding your current business can feel like “leaving the nest” in certain ways.
Since your brain is a pattern seeking machine, it seeks comfort in routine and sameness. When you challenge what’s familiar in order to take on something big, like going out on your own after being an employee, you can be faced with a lot of internal resistance.
Leaving what’s known for the unknown increases risk, anxiety and vulnerability. Before you know it, you may find yourself failing to launch and unable to hang your shingle or to expand your business, for fear of failure or rejection.
Once you feel safe and familiar in a situation, your brain releases chemicals which allow you to be relaxed and happy. However, if you feel unsafe or uncomfortable, your body tenses up and prepares to deal with a harmful situation.
In order to get passed a failure to launch, you have to understand your unique mind, the beliefs that are creating resistance and get comfortable with being uncomfortable. Resistance is normal when it comes to change, but it isn’t a valid reason to not move forward.
Whether you are in the early stages of deciding whether to go out on your own or you’re considering expanding your current business, just know that discomfort is natural but not a reason to stop. The best things in life usually happen when you leave your comfort zone.
Failure to lead
To be a CPA mom entrepreneur, you can’t just be the technical, CPA expert of your business. Part of having and growing your business, is being a leader.
No matter how small your business is, you will need to interact with clients, contractors, vendors and per diem workers, to name just a few. A failure to lead can create a failure to grow, for you and your business.
But even if you’ve never taken any formal leadership training, just by virtue of the fact that you are a mom, you’ve already acquired leadership skills managing your family. You’re skills include things like decision-making, role modeling and adapting to changing situations (ie, every stage of your child’s life).
As a working mom, you already know how to be a project leader, negotiator, communicator and encourager. Since you are adept at planning, organizing and handling the unexpected, there’s no reason to doubt your ability to lead.
As I mentioned before, becoming an entrepreneur will push you out of your comfort zone and challenge you in ways you’ve never been challenged, but that’s completely normal. This uncomfortability may make you want to hire someone else to lead or make you want to skip leadership altogether, but that’s not necessary.
The best way to lead your business is to first learn to manage and master your mind. You need to uncover what you currently believe about yourself, your relationship with your business and what may be getting in the way of your growth.
Since no one is a born leader, you can always explore what may be causing a reluctance to lead by exploring what you believe is possible. Effective leadership is a skill but one that a highly capable mom, like yourself, can learn and embrace.
Knowing that you already possess the intelligence and drive to make your business a success is half the battle. With a little guidance, being a successful CPA mom entrepreneur and leader means learning to master your mind in order to create a business that works for you and your family.
Failure to look up
Being a CPA mom entrepreneur can feel lonely at times; where you used to have a boss to discuss issues and coworkers to brainstorm with, you can often feel like a small boat just floating around the vast entrepreneur ocean.
Because of this, it may seem like you have a good support system in your employees, business associates and family. For example, you may spend time brainstorming marketing ideas with your employees or asking associates how they handle specific situations.
Every entrepreneur needs support however, the issue with a closely-related support system is that, this approach keeps you thinking inside the box. Each person you speak to, who has some form of relationship with you, will have thoughts and feelings that will often be influenced by the box you share personally or professionally.
This is why it’s so important to have someone outside your business and outside your box to share your thoughts and feelings with. It’s helpful to have someone with an aerial view that you can help you uplevel the way think, which will in turn uplevel your business.
Working with a coach challenges you to think differently, and as a result your business will grow differently. Be aware that the mind that created your current results isn’t the mind that will be comfortable with the changes that may be necessary, in order to be a successful CPA mom entrepreneur.
Remember, if you always do what you’ve always done, you’ll always get what you’ve already gotten. Having someone who can help you look up and outside the box of your beliefs about yourself and your business is how to get better results.
No matter where you are on your journey to be a successful CPA mompreneur, you do not need to do it alone. You’ve already got what it takes to go out on your own, you just need to be willing to create a vision for your business and master your mind to make it a reality.
- Even if you’re in the early stages of considering leaving your job and going out on your own, there are some challenges that CPA mom entrepreneurs need to consider.
- In order to get passed a failure to launch, you have to understand your unique mind, the beliefs that are creating resistance and get comfortable with being uncomfortable.
- But even if you’ve never taken any formal leadership training, just by virtue of the fact that you are a mom, you’ve already acquired leadership skills managing your family.
- You need someone with an aerial view that you can help you uplevel the way think, which will in turn uplevel your business.
- Working with a coach challenges you to think differently, and as a result your business grows differently.
If you’d like some help with the challenges you’re facing as a CPA Mom entrepreneur, please feel free to schedule a strategy session or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can get to work together.