In today’s generation, everybody wants to be an entrepreneur. Some find it very appealing, while some find it a way to add value to people’s lives, but only a few go on to become successful entrepreneurs.
Anybody can be an entrepreneur, given that they have an idea and the right tools to convert it into a functional business.
So, whom can we call an entrepreneur? An entrepreneur is someone who sees a need and takes on the financial risk to start a business to fill that need.
Similarly, when a woman initiates a business, undertakes all the challenges and provides employment to others, this process is called as women entrepreneurship.
Entrepreneurship not only helps the entrepreneur in earning the profit through the business, but it also gives livelihood to people, which benefits the nation at large.
But are just skills, ideas, passion, innovation, dedication, etc, the only difference between a successful and an unsuccessful entrepreneur? Or is there anything else that is making a difference and limiting many people from becoming successful?
We know that whoever has gone on to make a big name for themselves has faced a lot of challenges and difficulties throughout their journey, but it is their hard work and perseverance, which has made them stood apart from the rest.
Because when we start doing something new, we never do it to fail. We always start with the hope that we will succeed. But, that’s not the case in reality because although everybody dreams to become successful, but not everyone becomes
So, where lies the problem?
Just like the way you need to start your vehicle to make it move and reach your destination. Similarly, to be a successful entrepreneur, you need to start implementing your ideas to convert it into a successful business model, but many people, especially women, aren’t even allowed to do so because of many reasons like lack of family support, lack of opportunities, family responsibilities, lack of organized sectors, etc.
Although many aspects have improved, over the period of time but there are still certain limitations which are only faced by women like:
- Mobility problems: If countries like India where an average of 87 rape cases was recorded every single day in 2019, it becomes totally unsafe for a woman to travel. So, due to this, women can’s even travel to get the required raw materials for their business and they have to rely on a male, which proves that we still live in a male dominant society because they have to be dependent on men for getting their work done.
- Lack of education: We all know the importance of basic education but out of the world’s 774 million illiterate adults, 2/3 are women. One of the reasons for the lack of education among women is the lack of support from family members, which is one of the reasons why we have fewer women entrepreneurs.
- Patriarchal society: The society believes in passing the business to son and not daughters as we stay in male dominant society. Due to such partiality, the scope of women becoming an entrepreneur reduces as it reduces the opportunities available to a woman.
- Societal expectations: In our society, if you are a woman, you are expected to take family responsibilities because of which whenever a woman tries to do something different of her own, the society raises questions against her, especially when it comes to rural areas.
- The attitude of creditors: You need funding if you want to open your own business from scratch. But the attitude of most of the creditors towards women is that since she is a woman, she might not be serious about her business as she must be having other responsibilities as well. The creditors, don’t trust women compared to men in terms of credibility, due to which they avoid giving loans or funds to women to start their own business.
So, one can imagine how hard it is to become a women entrepreneur as you have to go through so many additional challenges, even before starting any business.
Although there are many limitations like mentioned above, in the society, few women didn’t let these limitations stop them from becoming successful entrepreneurs. One such example is Leela Bordia, who revived blue pottery, which was a dying art in Rajasthan, as she started a venture which became successful in selling these in markets nationally and internationally. It is because of her that not only the art survived, but even several people got employment opportunities.
Just like this, we have seen upward movement in the graph of the number of women entrepreneurs in recent years. But what else can we do to bridge the gap and increase the number of entrepreneurs because in India, out of 58.5 million entrepreneurs, only 14% are women .
So, what we need to do?
- We need to create incentives for those who invest in women-owned companies and also, not only we need to increase the use of loan guarantees for women entrepreneurs but also improve the availability of risk capital for women entrepreneurs.
- We need to give guidance to women to show them the different aspects of economic, social benefits of business ownership as it could help in increasing entrepreneurship rates.
- We need to provide more education to women as it will make them more confident and reduce their fear of failure. Because research has shown that women have more fear of failure and less confidence level than man. Also, we need to ensure that the education system should be gender-neutral.
- Entrepreneurs get influenced by role models and social context. So, it becomes necessary to promote women entrepreneurs as role models.
- We need to ensure that the education system does not discourage women from going into fields like science, law, mathematics, technology, engineering, etc.
Hence, we can conclude that today women are making accomplishments in every sphere of life And with the help of initiatives taken by the government, management boards, peer-to-peer platforms, families, the gender-based roadblocks are now being rapidly eliminated in the entrepreneurial journey of a woman which is a positive sign and if this continues like this we can see more women entrepreneurs with time..
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