When it comes to women in business, Canada shines bright. Women contribute to creating 50,000 small businesses, and nearly 10,000 jobs each year.
So in celebration of the contribution of these entrepreneurs, we asked a few female business owners nominated for Small Business BC Awards, what they think the key to success is, in small business.
“Stay positive! No matter what obstacles arise or what those around you may say, when you’re starting a business, always think back to what you had dreamed to achieve and stick to it.” – Shelly Korobanik, Owner and Trainer, Pooch Partners
“Even if there are 10 companies just like yours, you can always find a way to stand out and shine like a star. It might be to extend your amazing bright personality, offer extra advice or go one-step further to provide an experience and service to your customers.” – Dawn Cornish-Suelzle, President and Creator, Creative Cube Mobile Studio
Know Your Market
“Do your research to find out what your customers want. Ask them and they may surprise you.” – Eileen Fisher, CEO and Laundry Ninja, B & R Laundry Soap
Build a Team
“Your team is the single most important success factor of any business and the biggest asset, even though it may not feature in your annual report. The perfect team is not necessarily consisted of the top talent with fancy degrees, but is a complementary bunch that is led by an adaptive leader.’ – Alice Park, Founder and CEO, go2gether
Your Clients are Your Best Friends
“Treat your clients as though they are your best friends. Go out of your way to make them feel safe and be available at all times to answer questions or facilitate any activities they may want. Word of mouth is the key to repeat business.” – Cynthia Holmes, Manager and Owner, BenefacTours Inc.
Be Ready for Change
“Change is the constant, so steer steady but enjoy the ride.” – Jennifer LeBrun, Owner, ULAT Dryer Balls
“Perseverance is a must in a small business, especially when your business, consumers, and our environment is always changing. Adaptation to change is the most important things for continued growth and longevity of a small business.” – Yvette Cuthbert, Owner, Rocky Point Ice Cream
But Don’t be Stubborn
“Know how to differentiate perseverance from stubbornness. Perseverance is to stand up every time you fall, and keep going until you succeed. Stubbornness is to keep making the same thing over and over and expecting a different result.” – Silvia Martinelli, Owner, S&B Gluten Free Inc.
You Don’t Have to be Alone
“One of the most challenging parts of owning a small business can be that feeling of aloneness. Surround yourself with knowledgeable people that possess positivity. Your employees, business partners, mentors, and network of advisors can provide diverse solutions to the bumps along the way.” – Cathy Goddard, Principal and Founder, Lighthouse Visionary Strategies
Take (Calculated) Risks
“Don’t be afraid to take risks. We wouldn’t be where we are today if we didn’t step outside of our comfort zone to try new things and learn what works and what doesn’t. When you’re small you can adapt quickly to any situation and circumstance, which will eventually help you to grow and succeed.” – Doretta Pintaric, Principal and Melissa Sanderson, Associate and Partner-In-Crime, Market Ink Consulting
Connect with Your Business
"Do business from the heart. It's a simple and often forgotten concept. Connect with everyone you meet on an emotional level, discover their pains and create action steps to enable them to live better lives. In a world where businesses are congratulated more on massive profits over social impact, it's rare and refreshing to find companies who connect with their clients on a heart level. " – Samantha Skelly, CEO and Founder, Hungry For Happiness
Love What You Do
"Your business is an extension of you, so show integrity, learn from your mistakes, be humble and most importantly listen to your customers. Your drive and determination will reflect in your product. Customers will respond and employees will thrive on your love of your business." – Katherine Mulvihill, Owner, Onatah Coffee