Sharon Vinderine Shares How To Navigate The Ups And Downs Of Being A Female Entrepreneur
Being an entrepreneur means jumping on the scariest, most exciting roller coaster ride of your life. For women, hanging on during those drops and not-so-gradual descents means you absolutely must have confidence, even when you really don’t; balance, even when it doesn’t exist; and enough self-awareness to send yourself to the corner for a time-out. And I should know — as Founder and CEO of Parent Tested, Parent Approved (PTPA), I — along with my online community of 85,000 moms — test products to make my life, and the lives of busy moms, easier.
By Sharon Vinderine
WANT BALANCE? ASK.
Being a mom is my greatest joy in life (despite what my kids might tell you). As any mother quickly realizes after the birth of a child, maintaining true balance in your life is impossible. This is a very important fact to grasp as entrepreneurial women — mom or not — because no matter how hard you try, you will always feel guilty about something while trying to build and manage your business. The trick to overcoming this guilt is to ask for help. For some, asking for help is against the rules because if we can’t do it all by ourselves then we must be failures, right?
Wrong. Very wrong.
Our partners, our kids, our parents, our colleagues — being there for us is part of their job. When my kids were in school full time, I turned to my husband — who is also an entrepreneur — and asked for help. I simply couldn’t “balance” building my business and carpool and school activities and kids’ appointments and life all at the same time. For the last 10 years, we’ve been splitting all of that — balancing the balancing act, if you will. We absolutely would not be able to do what we do without the support of each other and our extended family. Don’t think you need to do it all — ask for help!
FAKE IT TIL YOU MAKE IT
When it comes to building your business, demonstrating confidence, even when you don’t feel confident, is key. Since I started Parent Tested, Parent Approved, I’ve been on television more times than I can remember. But did I have any television experience or connections when I first started my business? Nope.
Confidence in my idea is how I sold it to television producers and, eventually, to my team, to partners, and to clients. If you have true confidence in your idea then you’ll be able to sell it like nobody else can, and if I wasn’t so confident, every time there’s been a downturn, I would have quit. But because it’s something I truly believe in, I keep going.