Women entrepreneurs are more than well aware of how important it is focus on people when running a business, and that is great. A deep focus on the people who make your business happen, such as your clients and your employees, will help you build a better reputation in the business world, turn a higher profit, and also smooth out bumps in the road. Yet, as great as it is to work on your people skills, there are some things that many women entrepreneurs forget about being people-centric.
The most common issue that women have when trying to offer a deeper focus on people is that we often have a tendency to become a ‘doormat’. Society often tells girls who are growing up that they should put the needs of others before the needs of themselves, or that it is just not a good idea to ruffle any feathers.
While part of being a people-centric entrepreneur is learning how to smooth out conflict and ideally avoid getting into too many confrontations, being an entrepreneur will require you to stand your ground. Sometimes, it can be hard to tell the difference between being people-centric, and being a people-pleaser.
Here are the differences between becoming a people-centric entrepreneur vs. a people-pleaser entrepreneur:
A people-centric entrepreneur will listen to their customers’ complaints and try to find a solution that benefits both of them.
A people-pleaser entrepreneur will roll over and agree to any demands that a customer or potential customer asks for, regardless of whether or not it is actually financially wise.
A people-centric entrepreneur will try to be a likable boss and try to make their work environment as upbeat as possible.
A people-pleaser entrepreneur will allow her employees to slack off during work hours simply because they are afraid of being called stubborn or mean.
A people-centric entrepreneur will realize when one of her employees really isn’t a good fit for the company, and let them go.
A people-pleaser entrepreneur will allow said employee to stay at the job, regardless of how happy they are at the post, and regardless of how poor a job they do.
A people-centric entrepreneur will hear out what employees have to say about the direction the company is going, and use that as a component in her decision making process.
A people-pleaser entrepreneur will listen and follow what her employees say, regardless of whether or not it actually makes sense and whether or not she feels comfortable with the suggestions.
The bottom line that we are trying to drive home here is that being a people-centric individual is not the same as sacrificing your company and your sanity for the sake of others.
If you are worried that you are becoming a bit of a people pleaser, then take a step back and reassess your way of doing business. Your sanity (and bottom line) will thank you.
Cartoon by Kriti Vichare, entrepreneurfail.com