NBJ: My Top 5 Advice for Muslimahs Interested In Starting A Business
1- Make Istikhara:
Nothing happens without God. Start with God and ask for help every step of the way. It's always reassuring to know that anything that happens is Gods plan, and having complete trust that good or bad It's what God wills for you.
2- Talk to your 'guardians'
If you're still under your fathers guardianship (which is until you're married btw), speak to your parents and make sure to have their support. Ultimately you want Paradise, so don't break ties of kinship over business. Work something out. Same goes for your husband. My rule is simple, follow your dad till you get to your husbands house. Don't fall in the grey area of 'potential husband' over father. Until those papers are signed, you follow your father lol. If you are in serious talks with someone, discuss it with them before hand obviously. Any potential husband should understand you're under your fathers guardianship and he has the final say so.
3- Halal funding
Make sure to start your business with halal means. Even a fiver earned via interest isn't worth it. Look for grants, save up, start small. Nothing wrong with humble beginnings. Most big businesses started small, as did some of the best success stories.
4- Get a business mentor
Don't think you know it all, be open to business advice from others. Definitely look for a business mentor, they've been there before or they've worked with others who have. They have valuable experience which you can always benefit from. They'll help you with a business plan, set up goals, they may even set you up with connections.
5- Have a strong support team
You are not a one person army. It will get hard, you may get lonely, feel like no-one truly understands. Or it may go swimmingly and gets draining and you get swamped. Regardless your support team are those who will be there for you through thick and thin. They provide assistance or even just a shoulder. You can have one person or twenty people, but life's better when you're not alone.
And here are a few other tidbits I've picked up along the way:
- Stay God Focussed; It's so easy to get swept up in the whole process, but ultimately we want our business to be a means of worship for us. Keep God at the centre, even if you aren't necessarily a "religious" brand. You can keep God at the centre through your interactions and mannerisms, be trustworthy, honest, on-time etc.
- Be Patient; Nothing worth having is ever easy. If you're finding things particularly hard, increase your acts of Ibadah (worship). When it gets particularly trialling, do something charitable, make du'a or fast.
- Remain Grateful; Regardless of your situation, you are blessed. Always strive to thank people and God, a Thank You truly goes along way.
- Support Others/Don't be selfish; I think of this as a form of charity, you never know what good deed will be the one that tips the scales in your favour on the Day Of Judgement. Plus good deeds done for the sake of God, are excellent bargaining chips when making du'a (prayer).
- Always say Ma sha Allah; I like doing this, because it stiffens my natural/human jealousy. It instantly reminds me that the object i'm praising was bestowed by God.