Why is In-person networking so difficult for women entrepreneurs?

I don’t believe social media alone is what makes you a successful business owner.

business-networking

So I posed this question in my Facebook group because I’ve been there and wanted to hear what others felt. I learned that some women have a fear of rejection and not being prepared enough, some say we’ve lost the ability to be social and be ourselves by relying on social media and hiding behind our devices, some people are introverts and for some it could just be difficult talking to others about their business especially when you’re just starting out.

I’m learning, in my own experiences, that networking is a big part of becoming a successful business owner. I’m still a work in progress, as we all are, but it has become so much more easier when I released my fears and stepped out on faith. These days I feel like I can talk to anyone about my business and people say, “Wow, I had no idea you were doing so much!” when people say that, I say to myself I definitely need to network more, OFFLINE!

Yes, networking can be daunting, but that’s a part of being a business owner, it’s not for everybody. Being able to overcome obstacles, not concerning yourself with rushing and not being quick to give up.

Another thing I’ve learned is having an “elevator pitch” and practicing it constantly is one of the best things you can do! It makes it easier to talk to people and within seconds you can have someone’s attention when at a networking event. This is something you can do on your own or with people in your circle, when you are out at an event you are able to introduce yourself and your business with in a few seconds; short and sweet. Networking OFFLINE is how people get to know YOU and who they are doing business with. It makes a difference. You should also know who to connect with and Do not worry about rejection because those can turn into approvals and things like, “LETS SET UP A MEETING” it’s really all about what your goals are and how successful you would like to be in your business.

Comment and share your thoughts on this subject.

Closing out the Month of May….

When you look back at the month of May, how did you do with accomplishing your goals??

May was a super busy month for me! I told myself this year I would work harder on accomplishing my goals and I see it all happening.

I’m happy to be closing this chapter, now its time to move on to the next chapter. Continuing to work on the design of my website and watching that come together, partnering with some great organizations, and that’s not even half of what I’ve done I’ll say busy but well worth it! I can say I’m excited about what’s in store for the next few months and I can’t wait to reveal everything to the you all. Opening up this new chapter, hoping to accomplish bigger goals for June. Staying focused on the plan and following the path that’s being laid for me.

Feel free to leave your comments about this post.

 

The smallest steps…can make the biggest difference

8cdf40e55faaf2918359560beb3d6a81.jpgI believe as long as you are taking steps that’s all that matters, it’s when we get stuck is where the problems come in. The smallest steps can lead to bigger steps its all about your flow and what your goals are, whether they are business or personal goals take one step at a time, baby steps makes all the difference! However, when you stop taking those steps that’s when things become stagnant, you become still and motionless.

That’s not what we want to do especially if we have goals we’re trying to meet.

Listen, we all have a purpose in life, find your purpose and take the necessary steps! Think about how far you’ve come in the last 5 years…just take a moment and think about it…then think about where you would like to be in the next 5 years once you’ve taken the necessary steps. No matter how big or small your steps were in the past, you made some progress and you can continue to make progress by not getting stuck and living your best life. You do not have to compete with anyone but yourself, it’s all about you. Little progress is better than none at all and can lead you to make bigger steps and more progress. Never concern yourself with how others are moving, move at your own pace, be patient and results will show!

B.M.W Networking with A Twist!

Do you know how much POWER there is in Networking?? Networking gives you the opportunity to learn who’s who and what goals you may have for the future. It also gives you a chance to connect with new individuals who may inspire you!

Business Minded Women, B.M.W has partnered up with Thelifehelpers organization and State Delegate Ronald McDaniel Jr. to bring to you…

GOOD FOOD~GOOD PEOPLE~GOOD VIBES Networking event with a Twist! Join us for a fun-filled evening of games, food and great vibes while networking with some GREAT individuals! Whether you’re an author, non profit organization, boutique owner or just looking to connect…we want to meet you!

To RSVP ASAP click the flyer…

Also, if you’ve already done your Spring cleaning and have shoes you want to get rid of, bring them along, we’re collecting shoes all styles and sizes for a worthy cause. If you would like to donate and learn more about the movement contact thelifehelpers or email info@businessmindedwomen.net.

We hope to see you soon!!

Starve Your Distractions

Why is it so easy to lose focus when it’s time to go to your next level?? It seems like when you’re working on major goals no matter if it’s business or personal, here comes some type of distraction. We tend to lose focus and let those things get in our way—we’re not perfect, it happens! We can’t allow it to stay that way we have to find ways to let those distractions starve and die off! We sometimes get discouraged and allow distractions to take over. This can make it difficult to stay on track but you can’t lose focus; its not an option!

I want to encourage you to re-gain your focus!

When you have people who support and believe in you just as much as you believe in yourself, you can’t do anything besides embrace your next level! It took me some time to realize I had a greatness but when I realized what that was, I couldn’t allow anyone or anything to get in the way of it. I eventually had to remove those things that were distracting me if I wanted to continue to strive for greatness! When I did, I was able to focus more on the goals I set for myself and I was also able to start the journey to my next level, it helps to keep those who you know has your best interest close. I’m inspired everyday by those who are grounded, have great work ethics and continuously pushing through, in spite of. Stay encouraged by telling yourself everyday you have a purpose and it must be fulfilled. No halfsteppin! ūüôā

Keep in mind some will try to trip you up along the way, just understand it’s apart of the process, the more you focus the more your distractions will starve!

Here are a few ways I’ve learned to stay focused:

  • Create realistic goals that are attainable for you.
  • Remove anything that speaks negativity from your space.
  • Keep positive people in your circle; those who truly want to see you go further.
  • Read or listen to spiritual scriptures, motivational books, videos or podcasts, one of my favorites is Napoleon Hill.
  • Use your free time wisely. Sit in a room with no TV, no phone, no music no distractions and relax for about 30min each day.

You Are Your Only Limit

We have embarked on a new year, 2018 is here! We’ve made it through our first 31 days, finally! Now, we can really get focused, create a plan and execute!¬†However, if you havebusinessplan2-1-1030x648-1496859708 a plan and its not being executed this is not going to be your year. We all need a plan, sometimes a Plan B if Plan A doesn’t work. By February being the shortest month of the year, we have to really challenge ourselves and turn those plans into actions, set some realistic goals and get ready to knock them out!

As a CEO myself of 3 businesses, the newest one I will reveal soon, the other is already in motion¬†Intimate Xpressions and editor/creative writer for Business Minded Women, I’ve had to take a short break from everything and actually work on myself, turning my dreams into a reality and implementing my plans…I mean let’s be honest…we can’t sit back and wait for another year to creep up on us! I started this year out by telling myself “NO HALF-STEPPIN”…it might sound a little corny but it is MY own motivation that helps me get through, because at times we do half-step, usually I am self motivated but sometimes we lose focus and have to regain it. During my break, I went out and attended some events, spoke to upcoming business owners and some seasoned vets, all who have inspired and motivated me in some way to keep striving for greatness no matter what!

I want to encourage you, if you have the drive and the business acumen to market your business…do it! It’s not about what you know nowadays its WHO you know. Connecting and building great relationships with people who motivate and inspire you to do more is very important. Sometimes you feed off of a persons energy which a lot of times makes a powerful connection.

Recently, I was given the opportunity to interview some hard working business owners in the area at the ImSoDC¬†Customer Appreciation event held in N.E. Washington D.C. ImSoDC is a local brand that is becoming worldwide. This event showcased some of the areas top businesses. I had the opportunity to talk with a few and learn about their business. I had no idea we had someone in the area designing custom made watches, check out some of these businesses¬†K Joseph Watches, The Bow Tie Legend, Shoset Socks, Black Bella DC, Cigars 210…just to name a few. Some who have been in business only a year others 2 years and some 5+ years, to see the hard work and dedication they all put into selling their products/services and having the opportunity to talk with them gave me even more motivation to continue my journey! Don’t wait for opportunities to come along, create them!

Email: info@businessmindedwomen.net

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B.M.W STARBIZ OF THE MONTH

It’s time for B.M.W¬†StarBiz of the Month!
I am excited to showcase our Business Minded Woman of the Month of June!
As you know, I support and follow businesses in the area who are motivated and always on their grind online and offline!¬†This young lady is always working no matter where she is or what she’s doing she is always showcasing her brand…
This month’s B.M.W is my friend and Business Owner of the “IMSODC” Brand Frances Hall…unnamed (1)
Frances: Hey B.M.W!!
Frances: Let me start off by saying that this is a great platform to share stories and learn from one another and I am greatly appreciative for the opportunity to share and absorb all that I can.
Thank you so much! We have to create platforms to showcase business owners that work hard. It’s not easy…so I appreciate that…but let’s learn more about your brand! ūüôā
Give us some background on yourself and how you got started in your business…
Frances: I am a DC NATIVE¬†born and raised in Ward 8,Southeast, DC. I attended Catholic School from grades 1-12. As a latchkey¬†kid, I spent¬†mostof my¬†younger years¬†playing sports and entering writing contests thru Metropolitan Police Boys and Girls Club and DC Park and Recreation to keep busy while¬†my Mom¬†worked two jobs¬†and finished her¬†college education.¬†After High School, I was fortunate to attend Howard University as a Fashion Merchandising Major for two years. I’ve always loved fashion, partly because my Mom loved it. My Moms’ first love were her two girls, education and fashion. She participated in many local fashion shows as¬†a MC,¬†Coordinator and Model. She was also¬†a¬†live window model for L. Franks Department store in the¬†mid 1970’s.
This¬†is the¬†rebirth of the “IMSODC” Brand and I’m extremely proud to so vocal and an active part in it and yes it is indeed a fulltime job.¬†My partner, Beyshan Tucker started¬†the brand a few¬†years ago but became consumed with¬†of¬†other priorities, ie.¬†Personal Shopper/Stylist, Designer,Owner of Lavish Bay Boutique located in Georgetown, Washington, DC, along with other endeavors and was unable to give the Brand the attention required.
How did you come up with the ImSoDC brand name? Which is the bomb by the way….!!
Frances: I remember the conversation like it was yesterday, one¬†Sunday morning we were scrolling thru Facebook when I saw someone advertising their products. I said “IMSODC” is better and I can take it to another level. He asked if I wanted¬†to be his partner, I quickly accepted and have been spearheading this project since June 2016.

 

What inspired you to start your own business? 
Frances: My inspiration comes from  watching other Entrepreneurs work hard. Facebook also played a big part in inspiring me. It is a hub for all types of businesses, great for networking, dissemination of hard truths, information and entertainment.
Since late 2016, we’ve customized so many items; T-Shirts, Sweatshirts, Hats, Jackets (Flight,¬†Denim, Leather and Wool)¬†and Shoes.
Do you do vending events?
Frances: We’ve participated in¬†6 Vending events so far and as a person with more than 10+ years of Customer Service and Sales experience, I truly pride myself¬†on providing a great experience to my customers.
Regarding the question about other business ventures, last Summer, I made 8 pairs of Custom Pom Pom Sandals and they¬†sold really¬†well, no two pair were alike. It was so awesome to see people wear something that I designed myself and now its happening with the “IMSODC” brand. My partner is a great source of motphoto4ivation, he’s been an Entrepreneur for more than 20 years and has definitely influenced and motivated me to stay the course and stay hungry.
Let me just say…
I love to see a GREAT partnership in business, I believe that is very important because without a great partner that’s motivated…you can’t grow to your full potential!
How do you overcome adversity as an entrepreneur?….People don’t understand we go thru¬†many ups and downs its not as easy as some may think…so how do you handle adversity?
Frances: On dealing with adversity, I lean on my partner and his past experiences to help me overcome difficulty. I’m also always trying to discover ways to set us apart from others and keep the brand¬†fresh. I update pictures daily on our Instagram page, ImSoDConline. We’re currently working on the website and will be done by mid-June.
Frances: A special shout out to all of our Supporters, without them there would truly be no Us. I am sincerely grateful. I love receiving pics, please keep them coming and hashtag us!!!!! #IMSODC
Where do you see yourself in the next 5 years with your business endeavors?
Frances: Within the next 5 years, I do envision the brand being in a retail store.
Bonus question: If you could time travel back to day one of your startup and have 15 min with your former self to communicate any lessons you’ve acquired with the intention of saving yourself mistakes and heart ache, what would you tell yourself?
Frances: If I were to go back to when I initially became a partner and took ownership, I honestly would not change a thing. I love communicating with customers and recommending styles, etc.  I enjoy learning new things and discovering ways to better the business.
Thanks so much for sharing your story of the IMSODC Brand with everyone Frances Hall! Let the people know how they can reach out to purchase or contact you for a vending event…
Contact IMSODC by email at: imsodconline@gmail.com or

Follow on Instagram: Imsodconline

B.M.W StarBiz of the Month

Its that time again!! As you know, each month Business Minded Women, B.M.W  showcases a Business Woman of the Month to spotlight her success, along with the hard work and dedication that is put into keeping them focused everyday!

This month’s Business Minded Women of the Month is¬†Cheron McCrae owner and operator of Clutter Free Professional Organizing Services, LLCFB_IMG_1491315383471

Great speaking with you today!

Give us some background on yourself and how you got started in your business.

I began with a cleaning business which transitioned into an organizing business. Initially, I started the business to earn extra money, then realized the value of helping others. One day cleaning my client’s home, I offered to organized her closet because it was utterly chaotic, and the feeling it gave me once it was completed was fulfilling, the relief and freedom my client felt was even more rewarding. Afterwards, I organized my client’s kitchen cabinets, refrigerator and garage. I’ve focused on organizing and decluttering ever since. I still clean here and there but my focus is more on organizing for sure. It has truly become my passion and it comes so natural for me. Clutter Free has changed the lives for many of clients, and for that I’m grateful. It changed my life as well.

What brought you to Business Minded Women, B.M.W and what have your experience being with the group?

The name is what really grabbed my attention, I identified with it instantly. It has given me the platform to promote my business, connect with other business minded women and the ability to share and get new ideas for my own business. It’s an amazing networking platform that supports entrepreneurial women in a major way.

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How does the group benefit you/your business?

The ability to promote my business and display my passion is one of the enormous benefits. I’ve also learned so much about entrepreneurship and women empowerment. The support that BMW provides is outstanding, I’m grateful to be a part of this group.

What inspired you to start your business and to start this type of company?

To be completely honest, you could have never told me in a million years that I would be a business owner, let alone be successful at it. I just needed to earn extra money to make ends meet at the time. It was easy to start, minimum overhead cost and I knew that I was an exceptional cleaner.

Is your work commercial or residential?

Clutter Free is currently residential but looking to expand to commercial.

How many people do you have working with you?

I have 2 people that support me when needed. I also, work with a few moving companies and connections with the salvation army.

Do you do partnerships with other business owners?

Not now but looking to do partnerships in the future.

What keeps you motivated?

My devoted passion to help others and the ability change their lives in the process, it completely fulfills me.

How do you overcome adversity as an entrepreneur?

It‚Äôs not as easy as some may think…so how do you handle adversity? I‚Äôve learned as an entrepreneur there will¬†many ups and downs, it comes with the territory. I make sure I learn from all my mistakes, accept constructive criticism and I keep pushing through and never quit is how I overcome my adversities.¬†

How can people reach you if they need your services?

I am in the process of having my website developed and Facebook business page recreated, for right now I can be reached at cmccrae77@gmail.com or 202-744-7332.

If you have any other questions regarding Cheron’s business or want to set up an appointment with her contact 202.744.7332!

Thank you for speaking with me today Cheron! I wish you much success with your business!!!

Why is having Good Credit so Important??

I’ve added some of my own experiences here along with my conversations with Credit Expert Bonita Grant owner of Cure My Credit Scores to share with you the importance of having good credit. I think this is something we all should know and should be sharing with those who want to learn more about¬†how to fix credit issues and gain a higher credit score.bad credit good credit

When I was coming up, the topic of having good credit or how to prepare financially, was rarely talked about. As¬†I got older is¬†when I started to¬†learn more about the importance of maintaining good credit and teaching my son things I’d learned about having good credit.

After having conversations¬†with Ms Grant about this she shared her experiences and beliefs on the subject which made a lot of sense, stating that “certain cultures educate their¬†families early about credit. The majority¬†of her¬†clients are people of color and she believes¬†that mis-education of people of color is intentional¬†and systematic.” YES! I had to agree with her. To add to that, we have to educate each other, the more we learn the more we can teach and share with our children so they can share with their children.

What do you think lenders want to see when purchasing a home?? How are you able to purchase a¬†new car without having a super high interest rates?? Renting is even arefinancing-bad-credit.jpg problem without having good credit…I could go on and on…but I think you get the picture…investing in your dream home, a business, a new vehicle, obtaining credit cards, renting or purchasing anything is why having good credit is so important. Our credit expert states in her experience, if you ask a Loan officer would you rather have a client that has good credit¬†and a little money or a client that has a lot of money and bad credit, they will always say the person with good credit. ¬†With good credit all doors are open. The feedback received from¬†clients is that their¬†lives are changed after their credit score improves.

When I asked credit expert Bonita about her thoughts on my question, In your opinion, why do you think we forget about credit and how important it is? Bonita shared, “I¬†don’t¬†think we forget, I think we are taught that other things like fancy clothes¬†and cars are more important than¬†owning your house. I think we are taught that only rich people can own their¬†houses. I think¬†some are taught to be afraid of credit cards.” This is true, and to me credit cards can be intimidating, especially if you are not educated on how to use one. I told myself I never wanted another credit card ever again. It took me years to get another one, not only because my credit was a mess, but I was afraid I would abuse my card.

These days we have so much technology and social media we can find things so much easier, and now we have more companies willing to help and teach us¬†how to have better credit and maintain better financial situations. It’s really just a matter of finding the RIGHT company that works for you. I use to try to fix my own credit, however I couldn’t find the time or the patience. It was good for me to find a great company to work with me and all of my many questions.

When I attended the¬†“Real Estate Ladies Rock” event in 2016 I¬†made so many great contacts one of which was a young lady named Bonita Grant, Credit Expert and owner of¬†Cure My Credit Scores¬†I called her the very next business day! When I say she got me results…She went over and beyond to help me I asked questions, she was patient, friendly, helpful¬†and professional my scores actually jumped 179 points in 1 month!

Bonita worked with me for about 4 to 5 months and she got my scores right where they need to be!

Bonita was able to remove derogatory items from my credit report in no time. I asked her¬†prior to her helping me, what does your company do to help people with bad credit, she said “We educate¬†our client on how credit works. ¬†Our goal is¬†to make people credit experts so that they can teach their¬†families¬†how credit works. We write the¬†letters¬†that help get the negative items off their¬†report and help them add positive credit ensuring that they get to a 700 or greater in a short amount¬†of time. We are very affordable¬†and we have payment plans so that everyone can access our services.” And she was not lying! She lived up to her word. With that, I thought I needed to share her with all of my readers!¬†Try her for yourself…

For more information, contact Bonita Grant

www.curemycredit700.com

617-955-4599

800-707-5022