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According to the Foundation of Women Entrepreneurs, the number of businesses owned by women in different parts of the globe has increased since the commencement of the 20th century. The number of women’s companies increased to 78 percent from 1988 to 1998. By the year 2000, researchers have stated that one-half of all small-scale businesses will be owned by women in the future if the trend is maintained (Duff, 1993). Female entrepreneurs were “invisible”, because they worked under their husbands and started running business themselves only after the death of the husband. Mary Kathlyn Wagner who started selling books door to door and could make great money in six months proved that women can do amazing business. Her commitment to small business encouraged many women and gave them new opportunities for financial success. Alicia Forest argued that one of the things making businesses not growing it is not managing the capital they have put into the business.
Maitland Alison’s study shows that women establish only 3 percent of tech start-up businesses (Maitland, 2000). It is bad news since the number of women in the tech faculties is almost equivalent to the number of men. The study might look bleak, but the new generations who are proving to be active female entrepreneurs are bridging the gap (Eckert, 1996). Entrepreneurship is not about gender. Principles of achieving success apply to both men and women, and they will face the same challenges. With a proper vision and determination, they will be able to succeed. It is also essential for entrepreneurs to keep in mind that the harder one works, the more powerful he or she becomes (Maitland, 2000).
Duff Carolyn states that working together is the only way through which women can succeed. Working together will encourage teamwork, thus every woman will benefit from the group work. Groups have brought many challenges to women organizations since most of them were engaged in the leadership struggle (Duff, 1993). It may result into some of the women’s organizations breaking up and individuals starting their own business, which has its advantages and disadvantages. It is beneficial to those women who can manage their own business and disadvantageous to those who fully depend on the group and cannot stand up on their own.
Problems Faced by Women Entrepreneurs
The most obvious problem that women entrepreneurs cannot escape from is the financial problems (Cooper & Dunkelberg, 1987). Financial challenges range from the capital to the receivables. Receivables referrers to the money one have. Early studies reveal that in the past women were not given the same opportunities as men by the financial institutions pertaining loans. Women entrepreneur felt discriminated by loan officers. Recently, there has been a positive move by financial institutions since women entrepreneurs are saving more compared to the past. Success achieved by women in business administration has also brought a positive perception of women entrepreneurs by others, because their businesses have been proved to be the most stable and mature. It was an awakening call to the banks to change their prior treatment of women entrepreneurs. Another area where women entrepreneurs have faced challenges is procurement, for example, while selling goods and services to cities and states. Women face a tough competition in the bidding of goods and services since most customers have faith in men when it comes to the delivery of goods and services. Since female administrators cannot perform all duties, they are forced to hire employees. Most of the employees often prove to be not honest and thus cannot be trusted, especially with business finance. The challenge exposes women entrepreneurs to losses. Another problem faced by women entrepreneurs is working in a hardship environment, which they believed is just meant for men. For example, a lot of noise or dusty industry makes technical start ups not attractive for production and processing entrepreneurs to venture into.
Supporting Women Entrepreneurs
People and organizations have supported women entrepreneurship by accepting the effort made by women starting small business administration (Crainer, 2000). It has encouraged a saving program that makes it very easy for women entrepreneurs to get loans. The financial and business advisory organizations have also encouraged women to get into business and start organizations with the agenda of saving. Financial organizations like Merry-Go-Round are also a good stepping stone for women entrepreneurs. They have proved success in a situation where there is no security to secure loan. These associations can also provide leadership network and education support. It has also helped in the need to plan for career and financial success. Women need to encourage each other when it comes to business, the best way of doing this is through having saving plan where they can save their profit and also give loans to the members of that group. It will give a source of income to that small-scale entrepreneur.
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The Future of Women Entrepreneurs
The next generation has a bright future. However, the business world is slow to change. Economic advantage of the women in business and those who own firms will help to change the future for the better. In addition, it will assist to speed up the process of changing the future. As more young women go to learning institutions to get new skills and techniques in entrepreneurship, the future will be bright and women will be able to compete with men in government contracts, bidding, and technical entrepreneurship. More challenges are also posed to the mothers (Fauchart & Gruber 2011). They should encourage their daughters to choose business ownership as their career. When men start a business, they have money in the mind but women start a business for different reasons, for example, after getting divorce. That is why there is no women business in non-traditional fields like manufacturing. However, the situation is changing gradually. Women were born with endurance spirit which is an advantage in entrepreneurship since they are able to persevere naturally.