Episode 38: The Power of Unapologetically Being Courageous With Leslie Kuster
Only 1% of women entrepreneurs earn revenues of over $100,000 annually. Shocking, right? Many female entrepreneurs hope for trust fund backing to kickstart their business, while others are overwhelmed by the long journey and hard work. Others simply believe it’s their husbands’ job to make money and provide the life they dream for their families.
This is what makes Leslie’s appearance on the Product Entrepreneur Podcast timely. First, she defies all these notions. Leslie is a multiple seven-figure e-commerce brand owner whose business offers women Bohemian cheap clothing ethically made in Bali.
Leslie was in business for 17 years before she brought her business over the six-figure mark. She remarks that it wasn't an overnight success. Still, the first step in that process was acknowledging that making that kind of money was what she truly wanted.
She highlights the following as some actions you need to take to grow your business:
- Acknowledge that you want to make money and lots of it
- Inundate yourself with learning through podcasts and conferences and connect with like-minded people
- Prioritize taking time off and having 'empty time.'
- Know your numbers
- Build the business and invest the profits
Leslie’s mission is to inspire other women entrepreneurs, especially those with product-based businesses, to be successful and counteract the staggering 1% statistic.
Here are a few highlights from this episode…
[09:10] Having a job and working for someone else was a more significant fear to Leslie than risking and losing money, which motivated her to grow her business as hard as possible.
[10:20] What's so beautiful about being an entrepreneur is not so much the end result and the number at the end of the year in terms of revenue, but the person that you become during all of the challenges and the ups and downs and the learning. As a CEO of your own business, you learn accounting and bookkeeping and marketing and sales and design and creativity and communication and managing people.
[11:30] Leslie pinpoints taking time off and having ‘empty time’ as keys to her success, clearly distinguishing between the two. She explains that the feeling of overwhelm is one of the signals that you need to stop, take time off and have 'empty time.'
[20:10] Working on the business versus working in the business.
[21:07] Action steps to build wealth: 1) Know your numbers. 2) Build a business. 3) Reinvest your profits in other avenues like real estate and stocks.
[27:04] The problematic side of making a lot of money and how you can prepare for it. Leslie shares an example of a shaming experience she faced for her success as a woman. Not all is gloom and doom, though, as Leslie gives practical actions you can take to tap into the beauty of financial freedom.
“I don't really think that this overnight success thing is true. Success comes from a lot of hard work and being really, really focused.”
“Freedom has always been my number one value, which I was really committed to making sure happen. And if you want to have freedom, you need to make money as well.”
“That's what's so beautiful about being an entrepreneur. It's not the end result, but the person you become during all of the challenges and the ups and downs and the learning.”
“We're not victims of our business, and we're not victims of our lives. You are 100% responsible for your life. The money you make right now is because of what you did or didn't do. The relationships you have right now are because of what you did or didn't do. We are 100% responsible.”
Links & resources mentioned in this episode
- Leslie Kuster
- Leslie Kuster Facebook
- Leslie Kuster YouTube
- Leslie Kuster LinkedIn
- Leslie Kuster Instagram
- Back from Bali
- Leslie Kuster courses
- Learn 7 Mistakes Women Entrepreneurs Make & What to Do Instead, a free e-book by Leslie Kuster
- Profit First: Transform Your Business from a Cash-Eating Monster to a Money-Making Machine, a book by Mike Michalowcz
- Ali Brown
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