Traditional Role of Women
In many countries and in many cultures, women are expected to take on the roles of caregivers. Compared to their male counterparts, society considers women to be more nurturing and delicate. As a result of this outdated belief, opportunities for women to work have been severely limited for centuries. When women were able to start working outside of the home, they often found work in the domestic service industry.
However, this is an era where women have more opportunities to pursue their passions. Women are breaking barriers in male-dominated industries and there has been an increase in women entrepreneurship. In terms of women’s rights and the opportunities that they are afforded, significant strides have been made. However, there is still much more that can and needs to be done.
Women Entrepreneurship in Context
The appeal of entrepreneurship does not call men alone. If you were to think about it, it is surprising that there isn’t more women entrepreneurship. Especially when you take into consideration the existence of gender-based wage discrimination. Back in 2016, women in the United States made approximately 83 cents for every dollar that a man earned.
In recent years, we have seen many companies promote women to positions of power, such as on executive boards. Currently, out of all of the Fortune 500 companies, women only run forty-one (41) of these companies. That leaves over ninety (90) percent under the male rule.
More than that, there are discriminatory hiring practices that will try to prevent women from entering work environments. As mentioned before, women have adopted the role of natural nurturers and caregivers. Some interviewers may ask women about their relationship status and if they have future plans for raising a family. Companies are less likely to hire women that are pregnant or plan to become pregnant so that they do not have to worry about maternity leave.
Stats for Women Entrepreneurship
With different factors working to keep them out of the job force, it’s no wonder why we see more women entrepreneurship. Entrepreneurship allows women to set their own hours and determine their own wages. For working mothers, entrepreneurship offers the opportunity to balance having a career and family more easily than other professions would.
Starting Women in Entrepreneurship
There is no real difference between women and men in entrepreneurship. Yet, this is still a field that has been male dominant. Some governments will offer certain programs tailored toward providing services for women entrepreneurs and businesses with women in positions of power. Within the workforce, women make up a portion of the minority group. For centuries, women have been disenfranchised in the job market, so these boosts are given to promote women’s entrepreneurship.
The path for entrepreneurship is no different for women than it is for men. There are still the basic steps that every person has to follow in order to create a successful business. One must first have a clear idea of the product or service they wish to provide. Additionally, they need to find funding to finance this idea. More than anything, there has to be a scalable plan of operation—in terms of customer retention and expansion, and marketing. Entrepreneurship is a skill that can be acquired regardless of race, gender, and beliefs. Meaning that anyone can hone their soft skills while learning practical skills to implement in real-world situations.
Models of Women Entrepreneurship
While trying to reach a goal, some people may find it helpful to have role models to look up to. It is even more important for these role models to look like the people they are inspiring. Here are just a few examples of female entrepreneurs.
Here we have India’s richest, self-made woman, Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw. In 1978, Mazumdar-Shaw—a first-generation entrepreneur—founded Biocon. Biocon is a global leader in biopharmaceuticals. The company develops reduced-cost therapies for diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and autoimmune diseases. The largest insulin factory in Asia is under the possession of Biocon.
In China, education is undergoing a major transformation. Spearheading this change in education is Cindy Mi. Mi is the CEO of the educational website VIPKID, which she founded in 2013. VIPKID is an English learning site that connects students to qualified teachers who are all native English speakers.
It wouldn’t be possible to talk about women’s entrepreneurship without talking about Fashinnovation’s very own Jordana Guimarães. Together with her husband, Guimarães created Fashinnovation in 2018 with the goal of showcasing the intersection of fashion and innovation. While running Fashinnovation, Guimarães has also been head of The Nylon Project while also raising a family.
The Future is Female
When there are so many successful women to serve as role models, it’s hard not to feel inspired. It is important to remember that women’s entrepreneurship is no less valid than male entrepreneurship. The number of female entrepreneurs has steadily increased. There are many initiatives available with the goal of continuing this growth. As long as you are actively taking advantage of educational and financial opportunities, you will be well on your way to achieving your goals.