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Lessons from Scarlett: The Original Female Entrepreneur

The keys to success are always within reach. However, we need to remember that time and effort plays a big role in the equation. A successful person is one who is not afraid of failure despite the circumstances. Scarlett O’Hara is no different. Like a small business, O’Hara uses what’s available to her in order to achieve success. She does not give up, is resourceful and cut throat. A successful business online can relate specifically to the following examples. – WST

By: Alicia Forest

I think if you’ve been a survivor of any sort, you can relate to Scarlett O’Hara from Gone with the Wind. Sure, she used her womanly wiles to get what she wanted, but hey… who hasn’t? (And men, you’ve got ‘wiles’ of your own, so don’t think you’re off the hook.)

When Scarlett tore down her mother’s green velvet drapes to make the dress that ultimately saved Tara from the tax collectors, it was ‘necessity is the mother of invention’ in action. It’s sheer ingenuity to look at those curtains, one of the only things left by the Yankees, and see a fancy dress that could be the solution to her problem.

Scarlett was smart, savvy and had the spitfire spirit of her successful entreprenuerial-minded immigrant father. Over and over, Scarlett relies on her wits to maneuver her way out of predicament after predicament. And maybe some of her actions weren’t those of a lady playing nice (like marrying her sister’s beau) – but to her, the end result always justified her behavior. She took care of herself and her ‘folk’ with no apologies – and she made riches from it.

So, how does Scarlett’s smart and savvy personality relate to your business?

Your biggest client decides to quit working with you, for no apparent reason, leaving you with a huge income hole to fill. Your shopping cart bills your customers three times for a single purchase. Your virtual assistant decides to fly off for a spur-of-the-moment week away, leaving you with hours of admin nightmare to deal with.

There isn’t a businessowner around who hasn’t been surprised by these or similar challenges once they’ve been in business for awhile.

Yes, it would be nice to be prepared for all of our worst-case-scenarios with back-up procedures and the like, but please… especially if you’re the creative/idea type – who’s going to deal with all that detail for the ‘just in cases’? Not me…

When Scarlett turned that green velvet from drapery to dress, my heroine didn’t know she was carrying out a perfect example of exactly how to zig-zag your way very quickly from problem to solution:

Here’s how:

1. She stayed focused

Scarlett didn’t let herself get all spun up about only having one dirty dress to wear, picking cotton herself, or having no food to eat during the war that was going on around her. What she did was stay focused on the task at hand: saving Tara.

All the decisions she made and actions she took came from focusing on that single goal.

2. She quickly shifted priorities when necessary

Scarlett’s mantra of “I can’t think about that now. I’ll think about it tomorrow” kept her focused and on task, and allowed her to shift her priorities when necessary.

3. She was willing to fail quickly

Scarlett made a decision and took action. If things didn’t work out the way she wanted them to, she took stock, made another decision quickly, and took action again. By being willing to fail quickly, instead of trying to figure out and manage all the potential pitfalls beforehand, she was able to rebuild her life on her terms much more quickly.

The Original Female Entrepreneur Continued
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