I was chatting with a friend over a coffee yesterday. Amanda is an aromatherapist, which is how we originally met. As our cappuccinos cooled-down and the conversation heated-up she was explaining to me how recently she had been spending every evening, and most weekends, transforming herself into an online marketing expert.
During the conversation it struck me that Amanda had all the right skills for running an online business, and later in the afternoon it dawned on me that it wasn't just Amanda that had all the right skills for running an online business - it was pretty much all women. This seemed particularly appropriate considering it was International Women's Day that day.
Now, if I were one of the fairer sex you could understand me writing an article boasting about how genetically, and socially, matched women are to online business, but hey, I'm a man!
I grabbed a piece of paper and made a list and in no time had come up with 10 reasons why women are so well suited to starting and running successful online businesses.
There are probably many more than this initial ten, but let me explain those and then you can shoot me down in flames for being sexist if you like - or if you are of the fairer sex and you think I'm right maybe you can make me an honorary member of the Women's Institute or something. why women are perfect for online success
Reason #1 - Flexible hours
Over the years women, particularly those who have children, have had to get used to squeezing in the working hours around child care needs.
As a father myself I would like to think I did my fair share of nappy changing, but if I am honest I have to admit that my wife was the master when it came to flexibility and still is.
Reason #2 - Ability to Multitask
Succeeding online often means juggling multiple balls at the same time. One minute you're replying to social media posts, the next you're updating the web site, then there's the online payments to check ... and the list goes on and on.
Men are great at focusing on one task at a time, which can be a very good thing, but when it comes to an ability to multitask the award definitely has to go to women.
Reason #3 - Networking Skills
Women seem to be a lot better than men at networking in a genuine and caring way. There's less of the 'what's in it for me' and more of the 'how can we help each other?' attitude, which helps any networking to be a positive experience rather than a cynical attempt to manipulate someone else to obtain some kind of benefit.
Reason #4 - Less about Tech and more Touch
Many men are comfortable with the technology and love to tinker, whereas most women don't really care about playing with the techie toys and are more bothered about how they can use the technology to connect with others.
In the past this lack of willingness to focus on the technology would have hampered progress, but these days a lot of technology just works, which is great as it lets people focus on their online business and not quite as much on the technology behind their online business.
Reason #5 - Patience is a virtue
For a variety of reasons men usually want to see immediate results, whereas women are, in many cases, happy to set the ball in motion (or many balls) and wait patiently for the results to materialize.
Rather than give up too soon women are often able to adopt a slowly-slowly-catchy-monkey approach that might not result in immediate gains, but does lead to a very healthy level of success in the medium to long term.
Reason #6 Career break due to motherhood
This obviously doesn't count for all women or for women encompassing all the different ages, but for some women motherhood offers a chance to have a complete change of career.
I've lost count of the many successful online business women who, in a past life, had demanding careers in a wide variety of professions.
Reason #7 Women are more likely to use outsourcing
In my experience women seem a lot more comfortable outsourcing tasks that they would otherwise struggle with.
Men seem to have an inbuilt desire to want to do everything themselves (at least to start with), whereas women will often take a much more pragmatic approach and realize that they are better focusing on their strengths and letting someone else mop-up all those jobs they either struggle with or just don't want to do.
Reason #8 Women ask for help more than men
Women are often more likely to both give and accept help from others, whereas men often seem reluctant to seek help when they need it, as though it will, in some way, impact on their macho belief that they can solve all problems themselves.
Instead of seeing others as deadly competitors who have to be beaten, women seem to be very happy to help other women on the road to success. This is such a positive and healthy attitude. Yes, there are men who are just as generous, but alas, this trait doesn't seem quite as common amongst males as it does females.
Reason #9 Women have a flair for social media and blog posts
There are obviously some amazing writers around who are guys, but as far as a natural flair for social media is concerned I think women don't just edge it, they win hands down.
I read lots of online content and am always taken aback at how prolific and professional many women are. They seem to have a real knack for creating content that brings the topic to life.
Reason #10 Women don't suffer as much from paralysis through analysis
Women seem to be a lot better than men at just getting on with things.
For example women who have business coaches will usually seriously commit to doing everything the coach tells them to do - or at least to get going and give it a try before dismissing it. Men, on the other hand, will frequently doubt what they are hearing or reading, figure there has to better way, and so read more books, take more courses, watch more videos, or anything else they figure might provide the 'right' answer.
This paralysis through analysis seriously hampers progress for men. The female attitude of getting the instructions they need and then following them to the letter is far more positive and much more likely to result in success.
Again, I have to stress that the 10 reasons I've mentioned above obviously don't count for all women. There are indeed many men out there who have some, or all, of these skills in abundance.
Also, please don't take any offence over this being some kind of sexist stereotyping. I'm sure most reasonable people will agree that there are differences between men and women and that these differences should be celebrated. My 10 reasons hopefully cover some of those reasons in a positive light.
And as for the men reading this - who are now wishing they were women - the good news is that there will be certain attributes and skills that 'typical' males ooze in abundance, but this article is all about women so we'll have to save that for another day. Maybe when it is International Men's Day (is there such a thing?) I will be able to write a post highlighting what those are.
Hopefully, if you are a women reading this, and you have any doubts about whether you can succeed online, some of these 10 reasons will have jumped out at you and helped you to realize that you do have some wonderful skills that are so well suited to starting and running an online business.
I'm also putting together a resources page specially for helping women to succeed online - click here - so if you know of any books, courses, web sites or other resources that are specifically aimed at women please do let me know.
That leaves me with just two words left to share with you.