More than 11.6 million businesses in the U.S. are owned by women according to data provided by the National Association of Women Business Owners. Additionally, when added together, these female powerhouses provide jobs for almost 9 million people and bring in approximately $1.7 trillion in sales.
The U.S. Department of Labor adds that approximately 47 percent of the civilian workforce is female, with the number of working women who have earned their college degrees almost quadrupling in the last 40 to 50 years.
As a female business owner myself who provides services related to health writing and coaching, I am beyond proud to be part of these numbers. It makes me feel strong and fierce, even though, if I’m being perfectly honest, I still have days where I feel anything but.
Part of what helps me keep going when I feel weak or uncertain (or consumed by fear), is to take a few moments to read inspirational quotes for women in business. Somehow, their words help build me back up. They put some pep in my step and remind me that, as long as I keep going, I will get where it is I want to go.
With that thought in mind, here is one of my favorite business-related quotes for women:
Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved. ~ Helen Keller
As a one-person business, there have been many times I’ve just wanted to give up. To walk away. To hang up my solopreneurial shoes and get “a real job.” I’ve even submitted applications to job posts and gone through the interview process.
Yet, when push comes to shove, there’s no way I can quit when the going gets tough because I realize that it is the difficult times that make me who I am. It is the challenges that I overcome that make me wiser and stronger, and also make me better at what it is I do.
Still, I agree with Helen Keller that developing character isn’t easy. But I also agree that it is necessary to the success process. Sometimes I just need a bit of a reminder.
Curious about which inspirational quotes for women in business motivate other female entrepreneurs and professionals, I decided to reach out to my network. What follows are the words that they say they find the most encouraging.
The time to nurture a relationship is before you need it. ~ Lois P. Frankel, Ph.D.
“Seems so obvious,” says Joanne McCall, publicist for well-known names in the business and self-improvement world, such as Brian Tracy, Ken Blanchard, Geneen Roth, and more. “But I saw it after having done something fairly stupid without realizing it.”
The situation that McCall is referencing involved her reaching out to a former associate with a favor, yet failing to reestablish a relationship first. “So embarrassing,” she says, “but I learned from it.”
Those are some of the best lessons in business (the ones that sting a little) because they are the ones you learn from most. Typically, they are also the lessons that influence how you work with future clients and co-workers, changing you from that moment on.
It’s possible to climb to the top without stomping on other people. ~ Taylor Swift
“This quote might have come from a pop star,” says Dr. Andrea Santo, DMD, owner of Lakeview Dental of Coral Springs, “but I believe the insight she shares is applicable to everyone, particularly in these times when we only hear about is the doom and gloom.”
How many times have you turned on the TV or opened your favorite news app, only learn of one more story about how one person used or abused another in an effort to get to the top?
“Being kind to one another costs us nothing,” says Santo. “We can still get to where we want to be without tearing one another down.”
She goes on to say that, “Once you achieve some level of success, I guarantee you’ll feel that much better about the journey if you’ve risen to that summit with integrity and compassion.” I couldn’t agree more.
Do one thing every day that scares you. ~ Eleanor Roosevelt
Karin Hurt, CEO of Let’s Grow Leaders, says that, when looking back on her life, the times that have been most satisfying, both personally and professionally, have been when she took what felt like a terrifying leap. Or. As Eleanor Roosevelt says, in doing something that scares you.
Maybe this is where you are right now, standing on the ledge, contemplating making a major decision, but wondering if you should turn back or take the jump. Admittedly, there is some comfort in staying where you are, in doing what it is you know or have always done, but there is also a great deal of excitement in seeing just how far you can go, or in doing what Hurt says she does: “work like crazy to do more than you are convinced is possible.”
That is definitely another approach, and one that I believe would get you further than you ever thought you could.
Your competition isn’t your peer in the cube next door. Your competition is mediocrity. ~ Karin Hurt
So, this inspirational quote for women in business didn’t come from a female long ago but, rather, is a quote taken directly from Hurt’s best-selling book, Winning Well: A Manager’s Guide to Getting Results – Without Losing Your Soul. “I believe this because I wish I had learned how important peer relationships are earlier in my career,” says Hurt.
As a business owner, I might not have someone in a cube next door, but I feel that this advice still applies because I often think of my competition as others who offer the same type of services I do. Yet, they aren’t the ones who can steal my success. Instead, my biggest challenger in becoming the entrepreneur I want to be is myself, or, to be more specific, my complacency.
Before becoming a freelance writer, I was in law enforcement. In several of our trainings, we were taught that “complacency kills.” In other words, the more you expected a call to be run of the mill, the easier it would be to be caught off guard and potentially hurt or killed.
As Hurt suggests, I believe that this holds true in business as well. The more you allow yourself to be average or just like everyone else, the harder it will be to grow a company that stands out enough to withstand time.
Don’t try…do! Trying isn’t ever good enough when it comes to business – you have to do it to make it happen.” ~ Megan Bennett
This quote was also shared by another woman who is currently in business, Megan Bennett, President & CEO of the P.R firm Light Years Ahead.
Bennett says, “This means so much to me because my father, a successful business man, always said to me, ‘Never say you will try to do something or it won’t happen. Try is a weak word. Just DO.’”
I had never thought too much about the word ‘try’ until a few years ago, when one of my clients shared similar sentiments. And the more I thought about it, the more I realized he was right.
After all, if you give me a free trip to the Caribbean, am I going to ‘try’ to go or am I going to go? I’m going to go, of course. That same conviction must be there in business or else everything you ‘try’ will just be pushed aside.
It may seem insignificant or a bit weird, but I’ve found that it actually makes a big difference because I’m much more committed to what I say when I leave this three-letter-word out.
In life you have two choices: make excuses or make changes. ~ Christina DeBusk
Okay, since some of these other top business women have shared a few of their self-made inspirational quotes for women in business, I thought I’d do the same. Not for fame or to be attributed to these words, but more so because I believe this with all of my heart.
If there is something you really want in life, you have two ways you can approach it. Either you can make excuses to justify why you’ve been unable to achieve that goal, blaming your lack of progress on everything or everyone else or you can buckle down and do the things you need to do to get wherever it is you want to be in life.
One course of action will push you further from your goals and the other will bring them closer. In the end, the choice is yours. Which are you going to do? I certainly hope you choose the latter because that would be inspirational in and of itself.