Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Top 5 Mom-Specific Business Skills

So, you're not sure you've got what it takes to run a business? Are you just just a mom? [What a terrible thing to say!] I've been a mom for over 9 years, and a business owner for over 6 years. In yesterday's post I promised a list of skills that moms have in spades. There are definitely many, many skills you need to run a business, but here are my...
Top 5 Mom-Specific Transferable Skills:

1. Multitasking Prioritizing: Chances are, you can change a diaper, wipe a spill, pull up a child from the floor, talk on the phone, check your text messages and prevent a building block tower from collapsing seemingly all at the same time. We all know this is impossible, since we only have two hands, yet it happens. The reason for this is that we know how to prioritize. We know what needs to get done first, even if it's in rapid-fire time. This translates well to business when you wake up in the morning and you know there are 17 activities that must be accomplished and you need to decide which one to do first.

2. Patience: We've all gone through the stages of reading the same book every night for 63 weeks. Singing the same song over and over again. Answering the same questions every day. We may not like it, but we do it knowing that the stage will pass and we will be rewarded. This is the same for standing in line waiting for permits. Dealing with suppliers. Answering the same questions from customers over and over again. Keep at it. As long as you're doing something that is of value to someone, your reward will come.

3. Salesmanship: If you've ever had to convince your child that broccoli is the superhero of the dinner plate or that sweet potatoes are "just like candy!" and succeeded, you will do well in sales. If you've ever extolled the benefits of bathing more than once a week and had sweet-smelling success, you can make it in the business world. You know that the benefits ["Broccoli makes you strong!"] outweigh the features ["Broccoli has lots of vitamins!"] and that's what sells.

4. Empathy: You understand your kids. You understand that their feelings are just as important as yours. They have thoughts and ideas that are worth sharing. When you put forth the effort to understand them and function on their level, without being condescending or patronizing, you both have a rewarding experience. You must do the same for your customers. They have a need that you can fill. If you can understand what that need is and how you can serve it [not sell it], you will gain their trust and their business.

5. Saying "NO": This would seem to be an easy one for moms. I can say it a thousand times a day and not blink an eye. "Can I have cupcakes for breakfast?:" No. "Can I leave off cleaning the table tonight?" No. "Can my sister and I hit that wasp nest with a baseball bat?" No. See? Easy peasy. How does this translate to a business skill? It's important to know that it's okay to say no to demands that are beyond what you can offer. "I didn't want to pay that much. Can you do it for less?" No. "I need 75 of your products for tomorrow morning, can you deliver that by 8am?" No. "If you do it for free, I'll tell all my friends. It'll be really good advertising for you." No. Like with kids, you pick your battles. Think about whether a request is reasonable, and if it's not, or doesn't fit in with your vision, then it is okay to say no. Your business will not collapse because of one "no". And it won't collapse after 50 or 100 times either.

Do you agree with these as the "top 5"? What are your top 5 skills?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...