The last few years have seen a major boom in female entrepreneurs across various industries. From leading extremely successful multinational corporations to heading successful digital magazines and online trading sites, women entrepreneurs are steadily making a mark on a global scale. In fact, statistics from the National Association of Women Business Owners data suggests that nearly 11 million USA-based firms are being headed by women, generating more than $1.7 trillion in sales, as of 2017. Needless to say, the number of women entrepreneurs has only increased in the past two years.
Don’t be excited about these numbers for they tell you only a part of the story. When you compare these numbers with the vast network of business firms in America, you will find that women entrepreneurs are few ripples in the ocean.
Why does this kind of disparity still prevail in 2020?
Well, the answer is pretty simple. Alongside the hurdles faced by male entrepreneurs, there are numerous other challenges that only a woman entrepreneur needs to cross in order to set up a firm. And, that’s just the beginning. Sadly, all the hurdles faced by woman entrepreneurs scream gender-based disparity even in this age. Let’s take a look at the various difficulties and challenges faced by women entrepreneurs in today’s time and age –
1. Extremely Limited Funding
One of the major amenities that is required while setting up your own firm is capital. And, this is exactly what women entrepreneurs’ lack. According to Forbes, biases based on culture and gender are often reasons for women not getting adequate loans in comparison to their male counterparts.
According to a 2014 study conducted by Babson College, although there has been a positive growth of female entrepreneurs, less than 3% of venture-capital-funded companies had female leaders.
Of course, the numbers might have increased now, it is still less in comparison to the companies headed by men.
2.Lack of a Solid Support System
Any person intending to venture into entrepreneurship needs to have a great support system. Not just emotional support, new entrepreneurs need to have friends or idols in the industry, who they can look up to amidst all odds.
Women, like everyone else, crave for a platform wherein they can showcase their talent, get the required financial as well as managing assistance from while they ace up their growth curve.
Sadly, such a support system are often extremely expensive for women entrepreneurs to avail of right at the start of their journey.
3. Unfavorable Business Environment
Apart from the lack of a solid business network, challenges that come in the garb of social and traditional constraints also hinder women’s entry into the world of entrepreneurship.
Even in this age and time, there are numerous countries or religions that debar women from owning business enterprises. Although new era women are breaking all these invisible shackles of patriarchy and paving a road to success, a 50-50 division in the business sector is still a long way to go.
4. Balancing the Professional and Personal
Despite the fact that it is 2020, the expectation from a woman has remained somewhat similar – home comes first. So, it does not matter which profession you are in, your personal life has to take the center stage.
And when a woman is trying to make the ends meet on her professional front, trying to set up her own business, managing personal and professional lives becomes exceedingly difficult.
5.Gender Inequality Rules
While we are trying really hard to make the world a gender-neutral space, we have to understand that our entire foundation was built on patriarchal concepts.
Culture, laws, politics, and religion abide by invisible yet stern patriarchal rules, which make it way harder for a woman to topple over and make a mark.
Gender discrimination and disparity are real, and though laws are being implemented to make it easier for women entrepreneurs, most are just on pen and paper.
6.Fear of Failure
As a result of limited resources and gender disparity, there lurks an impregnable fear of failure, fear of treading into unknown territory.
True, no business comes with any guarantee but the fear of failure is known to be a great challenge to overcome for the women. As a woman, everything becomes doubly difficult – you not only have to build an independent business entity but also have to prove your capability to the world. And knowingly or unknowingly, even promising women succumb under such perilous and toxic pressure.
7. Excessive Timidity
The recurrent fear of being labeled as proud or boastful often drives a woman to be shy of proclaiming her ambitions and success. However, women must remember that humility must never be equated with timidity or shyness.
If you are someone who has succeeded in a particular sphere, be proud enough to own it. After all, exuding optimal confidence reflects your future growth and prosperity.