We hear it all the time from women. Why would anyone buy from me? Use my service? Visit my restaurant when there are so many really good ones out there?
Ask any woman in business—a super high percentage feel that by being the CEO, the owner, the top manager, they are imposters impacting how they manage, how they market and importantly, how they price their products/services (usually way too cheap). It’s not good…and we all have it!
We devalue our worth in business. We think we’re not qualified for jobs, honors or recognition. Ladies: we are way too hard on ourselves and this doesn’t go away unless we change.
- Make a list of your strengths in your daily life, your job, your business. It might be education or experience. It might be your undying energy. It is why you are good at what you do. Note: it’s probably much longer than you’d think.
- Spend a lot of time refining your Value Proposition (what do you offer that is better, different than anyone else in the marketplace). Maybe you do have a similar product but your value is your level of service or ambience that is unparalleled. It may be a skill or years of experience you bring to the business (go back to your list). Define the Value Proposition for your business and let it guide your decisions.
- Remind yourself every day why you are good. New York Times writer Jessica Bennett (“How To Overcome Imposter Syndrome,” June 2021) recommends saying aloud something like “I am incredible” and even add your name to it: “Jessica—you are amazing.” Never lose sight of you and your strengths. Say it enough and you will live it.
- Alert: perfection can cause paralysis. Too often a woman tells us she is not ready to move ahead (with what is an incredible plan, by the way)—everything isn’t perfect yet. Women dwell on perfection, afraid to move ahead if it’s not up to our standard of perfection. You know what? It’s okay to be a work in progress—it gives you the chance to learn and to refine. Go for it, knowing how much better your business will be.
- Own your achievements. Women humbly say they succeeded because they worked hard or had good luck. Men highlight their intelligence or their aggressiveness—they take credit. Hey girl! You succeeded because you’re smart, you have the skills and you did it. Own it!
Make the decision to recognize your value and you will soar. It will impact everything you do with your business and your happiness. It’s all yours.
Jean Mojo owned a marketing services agency in New York City and worked in both product management and advertising for Fortune 500 companies. Since retiring, Mojo has focused her efforts on mentoring small businesses both at WE CAN and SCORE as well as teaching marketing courses at Boston College. For more information about free and confidential small business mentoring go to https://capecod.score.org