Business Mavens Leave Passivity to Men

Women entrepreneurs are naturals at achieving the rank of maven in their niche. For those who don’t know the history of the word, it originates from Yiddish and refers to a trusted expert whose goal is to spread her knowledge to others. That’s what women do. Seeking out new information and sharing great insights is par for the course for moms and women entrepreneurs. We love to interact with others, and passing along our wisdom is part of our repertoire.

Gender Differences

There seems to be a bit of a gender difference with respect to this term. I’ve always thought of maven as a title for women, but have seen it occasionally used for men. The term Guru is used interchangeably too. The difference is with regard to the second part of the definition which states that mavens spread their knowledge. When the term is used to describe a man it is equated with expert only, not more. Men do become experts in their fields, but just don’t all have the same proclivity to actively mentor others. Some men (and women) are more passive collectors of information, learning for the sake of learning and using it to their advantage.

Women mavens love to spread good news all around. With collaborative instincts, they enjoy nurturing the development of others and seek out opportunities to do so. Women understand the value of the cooperative process and exchanging ideas with each other.

Maximizing Your Inner Maven

If you are just getting started in your business, are still fairly new to the game or have been around for ages it’s important that you take the time to keep learning everything there is to know about your niche if you wish to achieve maven status. The second part of the equation is your willingness to share your growing expertise with the world. You can’t become a maven overnight or even in a couple of years, so make sure that you are in an area that feeds your passion. Here are some guidelines to keep you moving in the right direction:

  • Focus on a tight niche. Don’t attempt to become mistress of everything or you will end up knowing a little about a lot of things. This is not the way to maximize your talents
  • Be consistent. The path to Mavenhood is long and requires diligent and disciplined work even when you would rather be doing something else. No one ever said this was going to be easy.
  • Be selective about what you learn and from whom. You could find information anywhere on just about any subject, but would you be learning from the best resources? Be picky about who you listen to and never stop asking questions. There are lots of people who might lead you to believe that you can take shortcuts, but you can’t.
  • Always keep sharing with others. This is the easy part for women, because we love to engage with other people. When you get into the habit of information exchanges you not only build on what you already know, but open yourself up to learning things you might not have considered.

Actively engaging in the things you love on a daily basis will keep you on the right path.  Incorporating the tips above will help you reach your goal.

© 2010 Reece International LLC/Dr. Shannon Reece. All rights reserved.


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Dr. Shannon Reece – The One Trusted Woman in a Man’s Business World
Starting your own business can be tough, but having the right tools makes all the difference. Dr. Reece provides the strategies and tactics women need to get their businesses from zero to launch and achieve real results. For more information visit


  1. Carol
    Posted December 5, 2010 at 9:48 am | Permalink | Reply

    Awesome post! Thank you! This is so ME…I love engaging, sharing my knowledge (Human Resources & Entrepreunership). I’ve been in HR for 20 yrs, owned a successful business, now back in the corporate world and planning my next business endeavor! Your post has given birth to it’s name! Will let you know once I’ve registered it… Thank you! I love your 3 guidelines: focus (stay on target), consistent (stay on track) & selective (seek the best).

    • Posted December 5, 2010 at 1:12 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Carol, Thank you so much for your comments. So happy to read that the post inspired you! That’s why I love to write. 🙂 Best wishes on your next business endeavor — please keep me posted. I love to hear about women breaking out of the box and pursuing their dreams! Shannon

  2. Posted November 17, 2010 at 3:00 am | Permalink | Reply

    I’m really glad I came across your blog. Though I’m still new in the social media world, I have already noticed many of the points you made. I’ll be sure to bookmark this site for future reference.

    • Posted November 17, 2010 at 7:09 am | Permalink | Reply

      Thanks Christina! I hope that the information I post is helpful and am thrilled to know that you will be checking back in the future. Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you with your business. If you have questions, I am available for one hour every week at my Wednesday Workout live chat. It starts at 2pm EST and you are welcome to stop by any time –

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