Advice I Wish I’d Known as a Female Start-Up CEO

Starting a business is a momentous and euphoric occasion for any women, and it was for me as well. When I founded Maria Shireen http://www.mariashireen.com, though I was finally living my dream, it was not without pitfalls. One of the most potentially life altering realizations is that “You Don’t Know What You Don’t Know.” Because of this, we are all susceptible to issues in our fledgling businesses that we may not see coming. In order to avoid this, I offer these 3 pieces of advice to my fellow female entrepreneurs.

1. Intellectual Property Protections and Enforcement

You’ve spent years dreaming and planning for the day you can at last launch the business that feeds your mind, body and soul. The most heartbreaking thing that can happen is to have a competitor come along and steal all of your hard work and creative inspiration. But this is a very real possibility if you don’t protect your ideas and designs. So, what does this entail?

• Patent what is important to others, not just to your business.
• Educate yourself on the basics of trademarks, copyrights, patents, and trade secrets.
• Work with an attorney who specializes in intellectual property.
• Conduct an audit to identify all your registered and unregistered trademarks and copyrights, as these are assets as well.
• Invest in well-written non-disclosure agreements (NDAs). Have an attorney review your employment agreements, licenses, sales contracts and technology transfer agreements to ensure all of your intellectual property is protected.
• File quickly as a patent application holds your place in line.
• Investigate international patents—a US patent will not protect you against competitors outside of the United States.

2. Be Flexible

Always be prepared to take action versus being paralyzed by plans. The best laid plans often fall apart at the last second, and the best thing you can do for you and your company is to roll with the punches. This will save you precious time as well as reduce your stress and anxiety levels. Have the confidence in yourself and your team that the proverbial “Plan B” can work just as well.

3. Network, Network, Network

Forging relationships early on in your business will prove to be invaluable for the future. Though technology has replaced many aspects of doing business, there is still nothing more powerful than face-to-face communications, telephone calls and handwritten notes. Take every opportunity to share your passion and your business with like-minded individuals and those who are invested in your success. Targeted networking can make the difference between a business that succeeds and one that doesn’t.

As a wife, mother and business owner at the age of 33, I found myself overwhelmed and dealing with feelings of inadequacy I’d not yet known. The delicate balance of constantly striving to be the perfect mother and successful businesswoman, while also desiring to be an engaged partner, proved to be impossible. One thing I learned from this experience is that you can’t give 100% of yourself to everything, and in trying to, you end up with 0% for yourself. Understand that entrepreneurship and motherhood are constantly evolving, and may take any shape or form that suits you and your family. The most important thing to remember is that your relationships are tantamount to your success—in life and in business.

Share small business news, blogs and social media tips with Project Eve’s community of small business owners and entrepreneurs today. Our contributors come from a wide range of backgrounds; so whether you are a small business owner, social media strategist, financial adviser, serial entrepreneur, or write an amateur blog we urge you to contribute a blog to our 500,000+ community today. For more information, please refer to our Content Submissions Guidelines.

174 COMMENTS

  1. It’s a pity you don’t have a donate button! I’d most certainly donate to this fantastic blog! I guess for now i’ll settle for bookmarking and adding your RSS feed to my Google account. I look forward to fresh updates and will share this website with my Facebook group. Chat soon!

  2. Nice read. I just passed this onto a colleague who was doing a little research on that. He just bought me lunch as I found it for him! Therefore let me rephrase: Thanks for lunch!

  3. Hi! Quick question that’s entirely off topic. Do you know how to make your site mobile friendly?
    My weblog looks weird when browsing from my iphone.
    I’m trying to find a theme or plugin that might be able to resolve this issue.
    If you have any recommendations, please share.
    Appreciate it!

  4. naturally like your website however you have to
    check the spelling on quite a few of your posts.
    A number of them are rife with spelling issues and
    I find it very bothersome to tell the truth then again I’ll certainly come
    back again.

  5. Right here is the right website for anyone who would like
    to find out about this topic. You realize a whole lot its almost hard to
    argue with you (not that I really will need to…HaHa).
    You certainly put a new spin on a topic which has been discussed for decades.
    Wonderful stuff, just great!

  6. When I originally commented I clicked the “Notify me when new comments are added” checkbox and
    now each time a comment is added I get four emails with the same comment.
    Is there any way you can remove people from that service?
    Thank you!

  7. Excellent post. I was checking constantly this blog and I’m impressed!
    Extremely helpful information particularly the last part
    :) I care for such info much. I was seeking this particular info for a long time.
    Thank you and best of luck.

  8. 774107 246742Lastly, got what I was searching for!! Ive actually enjoying every small bit of this. Ecstatic I stumbled into this post! and also Ive bookmarked to look at special data for your blog post. 123341

  9. I do not know whether it’s just me or if
    everybody else experiencing problems with your site.
    It appears like some of the written text on your posts are
    running off the screen. Can somebody else please provide feedback and let me know if
    this is happening to them as well? This could be a issue with my internet browser
    because I’ve had this happen before. Many thanks

  10. Hello There. I found your blog using msn. This is an extremely well written article. I’ll make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info. Thanks for the post. I’ll definitely return.

  11. You really make it seem so easy together with your presentation but I to find this topic to be actually something which I think I might never understand. It kind of feels too complex and very vast for me. I’m looking ahead for your subsequent publish, I will attempt to get the hang of it!

  12. Hi would you mind stating which blog platform you’re using? I’m looking to start my own blog in the near future but I’m having a tough time choosing between BlogEngine/Wordpress/B2evolution and Drupal. The reason I ask is because your layout seems different then most blogs and I’m looking for something unique. P.S My apologies for being off-topic but I had to ask!

  13. It is the best time to make some plans for the longer term and it’s time to be happy. I have read this put up and if I could I wish to counsel you few interesting things or tips. Maybe you can write subsequent articles regarding this article. I want to learn even more issues approximately it!

  14. We’re a group of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community.
    Your web site provided us with valuable info to work on. You have done a formidable job and our entire community will be grateful to you.

  15. Hi, just required you to know I he added your site to my Google bookmarks due to your layout. But seriously, I believe your internet site has 1 in the freshest theme I??ve came across. It extremely helps make reading your blog significantly easier.

  16. Generally I don’t read post on blogs, but I wish to say that this write-up very forced me to try and do so! Your writing style has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice post.

  17. I and my guys were checking the best tips and hints found on your web page and so before long I had a horrible suspicion I never expressed respect to the web blog owner for those secrets. My young boys had been as a consequence happy to study them and have in effect surely been taking advantage of those things. Appreciate your truly being considerably accommodating as well as for making a decision on certain amazing things millions of individuals are really desirous to understand about. Our own sincere regret for not saying thanks to you earlier.

  18. whoah this blog is magnificent i love reading your posts. Keep up the great work! You know, a lot of people are searching around for this information, you could aid them greatly.

  19. wonderful post, very informative. I wonder why the other specialists of this sector don’t notice this. You should continue your writing. I’m confident, you have a great readers’ base already!

  20. Thanks for the sensible critique. Me & my neighbor were just preparing to do some research about this. We got a grab a book from our local library but I think I learned more clear from this post. I am very glad to see such wonderful info being shared freely out there.

  21. Hey would you mind letting me know which webhost you’re working with? I’ve loaded your blog in 3 completely different web browsers and I must say this blog loads a lot faster then most. Can you suggest a good hosting provider at a fair price? Thanks, I appreciate it!

  22. I and also my pals happened to be checking out the good tips and hints on your web site and all of the sudden I had a horrible suspicion I had not thanked you for those techniques. Most of the young men were for that reason passionate to learn them and have now unquestionably been making the most of them. Appreciate your getting simply accommodating and also for obtaining this sort of exceptional areas most people are really eager to discover. My sincere apologies for not expressing appreciation to you sooner.

  23. I beloved as much as you’ll obtain carried out proper here. The comic strip is tasteful, your authored material stylish. nonetheless, you command get bought an nervousness over that you wish be delivering the following. ill undoubtedly come more in the past again since exactly the same just about very regularly within case you protect this hike.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here