Looking for badass boss ladies to learn from and emulate? Check the top of the music charts. Beyoncé has done more than sing some of the biggest hits of the last decade (are you humming “Single Ladies” yet?). She’s also built an empire worth an estimated $350 million.
Queen Bey is founder, president, and CEO of her own company, Parkwood Entertainment. She’s the face and the brains behind her brand, which extends beyond music to also include film, fashion, endorsements, and more.
You don’t build a business of that magnitude without some smarts. Clearly, Beyoncé is a Flawless businesswoman.
Even if you’re not part of the Beyhive, you can probably learn something from this savvy diva. Here are 10 lessons from Beyonce on business.
1. No One is Perfect…Not Even Beyoncé
Perfectionism is a nasty disease. I suffer from it, and bet many of you do as well. Here’s the thing: Nothing and no one is perfect. So why do we hold ourselves to this unattainable idea? The why behind perfectionism is a topic for another day, but the effects of it are pretty troubling.
When we expect the very best from everything we do, we end up stalled. We don’t take action because we worry whatever we do won’t be good enough (or we won’t be good enough). And when our businesses don’t measure up to our ideals, we get angry or depressed and are likely to just give up on our dreams.
Listen to Bey: It’s actually good that life isn’t perfect. If it were, you wouldn’t appreciate it. Ever notice how your gratitude increases after going through hard times? Plus, we tend to get stronger and better when we are faced with challenges.
2. Keep Reaching Higher
Are you good about doing regular goal setting? I bet Bey is. She probably has a killer vision board (made from 24-karat gold) that she updates every year.
It’s not enough to have some vague idea of how you’d like your life to look, or even to write down a list of goals in a journal that you pack away in a box in the attic. To grow beyond your wildest dreams, you need spend time each year (or even more often) thinking about your goals.
Once you’ve crafted a list of goals, go about the work of making them achievable (my free worksheet can help). Then, once you crush one set of goals, return to your list and update it with bigger and better aspirations. Chip away at your own Bey-like empire one goal at a time!
3. Take Time for You
Now that I’m a mom, I don’t carve out enough “me” time anymore (in fact, I don’t carve out any). I suspect it’s a problem for non-moms, too. Women tend to give and give until it hurts, without doing enough for ourselves.
While it may seem indulgent to take breaks for rest and relaxation (especially to overachieving Type As), it’s imperative to make time for self-care. Without it, you’ll quickly crash and burn. That doesn’t do your business, family, or self any good.
4. Believe in Yourself
If you don’t believe in yourself and your product/service, why would anyone else? Great success is built on a foundation of self-confidence.
Sometimes, the problem lies within. Your product/service is amazing, but you let Imposter Syndrome or doubt cloud your vision. If that’s the case, it’s time to do the personal growth necessary to kick your inner critic to the curb (my free workbook can help).
Other times, the problem is quality. If you aren’t 100% certain your product/service is worth every penny, get to work on making improvements. Get an education to improve your skills, refine your product/service—do whatever it takes to make your offering the best it can be.
5. It’s Up to You
Are you waiting for something to happen? Waiting for clients to find you? Waiting for people to subscribe to your email? Waiting to suddenly feel confident as a business owner?
Stop waiting and start doing.
There is no magic formula for success. There is no pill you can take to suddenly have confidence, nor is there one step you can take to instantly have a giant social media following. Growing and running a business takes time, patience, constant learning, and lots of refining and reacting.
6. Protect Your Time
Whether you’re Beyoncé or an Average Jane, there are only 24 hours in a day. Money can’t buy time. It should be your most precious commodity, but most of us waste so much of it every single day.
Are you making the most of your time? Or are you spending hours on Facebook when you should be looking for clients? Maybe you use 2 hours each day handling administrative tasks that could be handed over to a virtual assistant?
Evaluate how you’re allocating your precious hours and look for opportunities for improvement. Want to be as rich as Beyoncé? Then you need to make every hour count.
7. Keep Learning
Beyoncé may be at the top of her game, but she isn’t resting on her laurels. She knows that the only way to continue reaching new heights is to never give up on education.
It’s not only foolish to think you know everything, it’s dangerous. That sort of attitude can be the downfall of a business. A product/service that isn’t always improving will quickly be destroyed by the competition.
If you don’t already have one, now is the time to develop a lifelong love of learning. Read about your industry, learn from your peers, and dedicate yourself to never settling for the status quo.
8. Follow Your Passion
Why did you go into business? Hopefully, it was because you wanted to pursue a passion, to make people’s lives better, and to create something spectacular. With that sort of mission, you likely wake up excited to work each day.
Running a company is a 24/7 job. It takes incredible dedication, discipline, and determination. Doing it for the wrong reasons will leave you depleted and unhappy. You need to truly love what you do, how you do it, and who you serve. If not, reevaluate and make changes.
9. Embrace the Lows
The difference between those who soar and those who stagnant is often in how they handle adversity. Successful people use challenges as opportunities for growth, while others let the hard times knock them out.
When tough times come calling (and they happen to everyone, even Beyoncé), you have a choice. You can wallow in self-pity and accept defeat or you can pull yourself up by your bootstraps and make things better.
It’s okay to feel down sometimes, and even to throw yourself a short-lived pity party. But if you want to achieve A-list results, you need to find the lesson in every struggle and make growth a priority.
10. Do the Work
It’s not enough to dream it, you have to actually do it. Vision boards, goal planning, and inspirational retreats are amazing, but they’re no substitute for hard work.
Spend plenty of time thinking about what you want to accomplish. That’s the first step. If you don’t know what you want to achieve, you’ll never get there. But once you have a picture of where you’re headed, it’s time to put action behind the idea.
Want your dreams to come true? Get to work!