Anyone who starts a business venture faces challenges, but there are some challenges faced by women entrepreneurs that are different than that faced by men Entrepreneurship is like an adventure and if there are no challenges in an adventure it won’t be fun, so is business no risks means no profit.
Problems Faced by Women Entrepreneurs
Some of the problems faced by women entrepreneurs are as follows:
Generally people have a perception that women are supposed to be homemakers, and hence they are expected to spend more time at home, taking care of other family members, especially married women with children. They have to balance household work and business work, they can’t put all their effort into just one thing, which is too stressful, as a result, many women entrepreneurs may quit, business.
Lack of education
Women are denied higher education especially in rural areas and underdeveloped countries, this prevents the growth of foresight and mental aptitude needed for an entrepreneur, as a result, we lose many potential entrepreneurs.
In many places, women are married off at an early age, and are supposed to look after in-laws and children. The in-laws give more importance to family life than career and social life, and they may not be very supportive of their daughter-in-law working.
The business world is dominated by males, the women are heavily outnumbered by men, and the men may not be interested in having a business relationship with women, as a result, it restricts the growth of businesses run by women. They are still struggling to find their footing in male-dominated business world. They are considered helpers and not leaders.
- Finance is the lifeblood of any business.
- Many societies do not encourage women entrepreneurs, and in such societies, it’s hard for women entrepreneurs to raise funds.
- They also lack the connections needed for fundraising.
- Women generally do not have property on their names, as a result, they can’t raise funds using collateral.
- Bankers consider women less credit-worthy than men, as a result, they may not be willing to provide loans to women.
We are seeing the rise of women entrepreneurs lately, which also means they lack experience and are very few in numbers compared to men, as a result they are likely to face tough competition from experienced men entrepreneurs. It makes the business environment a bit less favorable for new women entrepreneurs.
Lack of hands-on experience
Women don’t get as much exposure as men, they also lack entrepreneurial bent of mind, and due to lack of practical knowledge their entrepreneurial aptitude is not at par with men, and this may put at risk the survival of women-run businesses.
Entrepreneurs may need to visit new places and meet new people, it’s comparatively not safe for women to move around all alone without taking due precautions.
As mentioned earlier they lack financial resources and are not financially self-sufficient, they may not have an equal financial resources as that of men, it decreases their risk tolerance, they can’t take as much risk as men, so they need to be very cautious.
The business industry is male-dominated, and in such an environment women find it hard to exert dominance, in many such workplaces people don’t want to acknowledge leadership roles by women. In such an environment women will find it hard to earn respect, the people simply don’t want to acknowledge the leadership potential of female entrepreneurs.
In a male-dominated industry, it can be hard to carve your own path and build your own identity and link/connections, In business people try to minimize risk, so they may use a try and tested method that has been proven successful earlier, so they may not be willing to give a chance to new entrepreneurs, especially a female.
Lack of confidence
There are many brilliant women, but they lack the confidence to start up, they feel they are not right and need conformation from others, hence they are hesitant to take decisions on their own, all they need is a little support and they are good to go.
Limited access to industry network and connections
Network provides critical information to entrepreneurs and helps to make the right move, it helps to keep up-to-date about the industry and trends and provides a safe way to learn about the rules of business before diving into it. Because of the lack of connections for women, it’s hard to gather advice on start-ups, they will have to do everything from scratch.
The imbalance between personal and business life
Society and family expect her to be a good mother, wife, daughter-in-law and always available, whereas business is not some 8-hour job it demands too much time and commitment especially during the starting phase.
Due to the biased perception against women that they can’t be leaders, investors, banks, suppliers, etc. may not be willing to put as much trust in women entrepreneurs as they would do in men entrepreneurs. This acts as a deterrent for women entrepreneurs.
Fear of failure
Failure is a step towards success, and its not any big deal if men fail, but if a female entrepreneur fail they may have to go through more negative comments and taunts than men, it is as if they were waiting for her failure. So they are more afraid of failures, because with every failures she will have to face more and more negative people.
In many places law, culture, religion and politics are built upon a patriarchal foundation, women really need to outperform men for recognition while facing stigma and discrimination. Otherwise they have very slim chances of success and recognition.
Often women are shy about their success and accomplishment, they are afraid of being called arrogant and boastful. As a result they don’t give themselves the due recognition they deserve. They need to stand by their success and let the other around them know about it.