International Women's Day is a celebration of progress towards gender equity and a reminder of the challenges that remain. Although women have made significant strides in breaking through barriers and achieving success in industries that were once male dominated, women entrepreneurs continue to face unique challenges that can hinder their success. In this blog, we will explore the importance of gender equity for women entrepreneurs and how embracing it can empower them to achieve their full potential.
CHALLENGES WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS FACE:
Women entrepreneurs face numerous challenges in the business world, with access to funding being one of the biggest obstacles. According to a 2020 PitchBook study, women entrepreneurs receive significantly less funding than their male counterparts, even when their businesses have similar potential for success. In fact, companies with at least one female founder raised just 2.4% of the total venture capital funding, while male-only teams received 79.1% of the total funding, and mixed-gender teams received 18.5%. This gender disparity can be attributed to several factors, including gender bias among investors and the lack of female representation in the venture capital industry. All Raise's report found that only 4% of venture capital funding goes to female-led companies. Compounding this problem is the lack of women decision-makers in the VC industry, with just 11% of decision-makers at VC firms being women.
In addition to funding challenges, women entrepreneurs also face a lack of support and resources tailored specifically to their needs. Many women struggle to find mentors and networks that can help them navigate the business world, which can limit their ability to grow and scale their businesses. Moreover, women entrepreneurs often face unique challenges related to work-life balance, as they may need to balance the demands of running a business with responsibilities at home.
EQUITY VS EQUALITY & THE IMPORTANCE OF GENDER EQUITY: Equality and equity are two concepts that are often used interchangeably, but they have different meanings. Equality is the state of being equal, where everyone has the same opportunities, resources, and rights. Equity, on the other hand, is the state of being fair and just, where everyone has access to the resources and opportunities, they need to achieve their full potential. In other words, equity recognises that everyone has different needs and circumstances, and it seeks to address those differences by providing support and resources where they are needed most.
Gender equity is crucial for women entrepreneurs as it ensures equal access to opportunities and resources, creating a level playing field for competition. According to a study by McKinsey & Company, achieving gender equality could add $12 trillion to the global GDP by 2025. When women are granted the same opportunities and resources as men, they can contribute to society and the economy similarly.
Gender equity also fosters diversity and inclusion, which can lead to better business performance. A BCG report revealed that companies with diverse leadership teams had 19% higher revenues due to innovation. Gender equity is not only beneficial for women entrepreneurs but also for the overall business world. The same study found that businesses with diverse executive boards are 33% more likely to outperform their peers in terms of profitability. Moreover, companies with more women in leadership positions have better employee morale, lower turnover rates, and higher levels of innovation. Diverse perspectives and ideas in businesses enable better adaptation to changing markets and identification of new opportunities for growth.
HOW A SERVICED OFFICE CAN SUPPORT WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS:
As a workspace solution, serviced offices have become increasingly popular among entrepreneurs and small business owners due to their flexibility and cost-effectiveness. For women entrepreneurs, serviced offices can offer a supportive and empowering environment that helps them succeed in business. One of the main advantages of a serviced office is the flexibility it provides. As we mentioned earlier, women entrepreneurs may face unique challenges and responsibilities that make it difficult to commit to a traditional office space. With serviced offices, entrepreneurs can rent office space for a short-term basis or even a few days a week, which can help them balance work and life responsibilities.
In addition to flexibility, serviced offices offer amenities like administrative support, meeting rooms, and shared spaces that can benefit women entrepreneurs. These resources allow entrepreneurs to focus on growing their businesses and collaborating with others. Research shows that access to a supportive workspace can increase productivity, creativity, and overall success. Serviced offices provide the necessary support and flexibility for women entrepreneurs to succeed and promote gender equity in the workplace.
IN CONCLUSION, gender equity is crucial for the success of women entrepreneurs in the business world. By empowering women entrepreneurs and promoting gender equity in the workplace, we can create a more inclusive and innovative business world.