The Girls' Guide to Building a Million-Dollar Business

The Girls' Guide to Building a Million-Dollar Business

Author: Susan Wilson Solovic
Pub Date: November 2007
Print Edition: $18.95
Print ISBN: 9780814431856
Page Count: 240
Format: Paper or Softback

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Excerpt

INTRODUCTION

Congratulations. You have just opened the door to what hopefully will become one of the most exciting and rewarding journeys of your life: building a million-dollar business. Before you read on, take a minute to look at the front cover of this book. Notice the woman pictured there? Doesn’t she look as though she’s having the time of her life? Can’t you hear her exclaim, “I did it!”? She has the world by the tail. That could be you.

This book is designed to help you reach that moment of sheer ecstasy. Not in an intimate sense, but the kind of ecstasy you feel from succeeding, from living your dreams, from being the person you were meant to be. As you read and learn tips and strategies outlined throughout the book, I want you to stay focused on that feeling. You deserve to feel empowered, energized, and wonderful every day of your life.

It’s Your Turn to Be in the Spotlight

No matter what stage of life you are in at this point—please listen to me. It’s time for you. There are far too many women who postpone or give up their personal dreams in order to take care of others in their lives. Obligations fill their days and their own passions get buried. Their personal identities are tied up in other people’s lives.

As you read, I hope you’ll learn how exhilarating sitting at the helm of a million-dollar enterprise can be—not only from the sense of personal accomplishment, but also from your ability to impact the world. As a million-dollar business owner, you can provide for your family, your employees, and their families. Through charitable contributions you can help others in need. Your leadership position in the business world empowers you with a voice that can make a difference in our government. And as a role model, you can touch thousands of others and inspire them to do great things with their lives. It doesn’t get much better than that.

Join Millions of Women Who Get It

In 2006, the Center for Women’s Business Research reported that there are 10.4 million privately held firms in the United States that are 50 percent or more owned by a woman. This statistic doesn’t include companies such as mine, where I am the largest individual stockholder and the CEO, but I don’t own 50 percent. So the actual number of women-owned and women-led businesses is much higher than what is officially recognized.

“Women are catching up to men across the world,” says I. Elaine Allen, professor of statistics and entrepreneurship at Babson College in Massachusetts. Professor Allen was part of the Global Entrepre¬neurship Monitor (GEM) 2005 Report on Women and Entrepre¬ neurship. This research is part of the world’s largest and longest-standing study of entrepreneurial activity, and it is the first comprehensive and timely study of women entrepreneurs around the globe.

Women are opening businesses at twice the rate of their male counterparts. It’s the fastest growing segment of the U.S. economy. Women view business ownership as an opportunity for independence, creative control, and financial freedom. So the number of women jumping into the entrepreneurial pond isn’t the issue. The issue is their ability to turn these businesses into large, sustainable, business operations.

“But maybe most women just don’t want to grow their businesses?” is a response I often get to that statement. Sure, some women may not want to grow their businesses, and that’s fine. However, are they really making that decision based on a true understanding of what is possible? I don’t think they are.

Additionally, research from the Center of Women’s Business Ownership notes nine out of ten women business owners want to expand their businesses and four in ten want their businesses to become as large as possible.

So we know the number of women-owned firms is exploding, and we also know that many want to grow and expand their business. The astounding statistic that drove me to write this book is the fact that fewer than 3 percent of women-owned businesses in the U.S. gross a million dollars or more in revenue. To increase that number, women need a guide to help them navigate the challenges of business ownership—hence The Girls’ Guide to Building a Million-Dollar Business.

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