Yes we can! But should we?
In the previous post I wrote about women and the Yes, we can! attitude. My title may suggest that I don't think we, as women, should do it. 'It' being start your own business, change the world. Don't get me wrong. I absolutely think we should do that but the way we go about it needs to change.
Women are stuck thinking and staying small and we have our Yes We Can! attitude to blame.
Girls can do anything. I grew up with that poster on the wall of every classroom in my school. It wasn't until I got married and had a baby at the age of thirty that I felt defeated for the first time in my life. I was raised and educated to be independent, to take control of my own destiny, to not take no for an answer, to work hard towards my goals, etc, etc. It came as a shock to me to have to ask for help, admit I was struggling at times, and to be completely dependent on someone else for financial support.
My designer children's bag boutique, Mee a Bee, was my vehicle to regain control. I had complete autonomy over design, production, marketing and branding decisions. The money I made was mine. I did have a lot of (moral) support but the business was (and is) my own.
After a lifetime diet of the girls can do anything mantra I took it to the extreme. Need a website? I can make my own, case in point, this site is beautifully hosted by Squarespace so I don't need to know a shred of html. Need a logo? I can design my own. Photos? Well I have a camera ... Need a tax return? I have Quickbooks.
Technology has made it possible to manage every single aspect of your business yourself. But it's my contention that this DIY approach is keeping us small and leads to the eventual demise of the company. My business kept me away from my family. But whose fault is that? I'm the owner, the boss, I made the decisions. Over the coming weeks I will be dissecting my years as jack-of-all-trades /wearer of all the hats / control freak of Mee a Bee.
What I'm most curious about right this minute is whether men starting their own businesses also make the same DIY mistakes and if so, to what extent?