According to the 2018 State of Women-Owned Businesses Report, the number of businesses owned by women has increased with about 3,000% since 1972. Even more, women-owned businesses cover a diverse background from healthcare to scientific and technical services.
So, the data is clearly showing that more and more women are interested in starting a life where they are in control of how things unfold.
But what exactly triggered this change? Why are women more interested in owning a business rather than just going to a standard job?
As it turns out, there’s a number of factors that contributed to the current situation. However, the five mentioned below are the ones that appear most often.
#1: The Family – Work Balance
Most women don’t care for the rigid schedule of a 9-to-5 job because they are still the primary caregiver in their families.
When you can’t leave the office and have to stay overtime, the family life suffers. Not to mention that mothers who have a successful career are often judged by both men and women as favoring their work over their children (regardless of the fact that this is true or not).
Still, when you own the business, you have the option to work flexible hours. As Doreen Marks from Otis Technology pointed out: “When you own the company, it doesn’t matter which 80 hours a week you work”.
However, it’s not just mothers who join the entrepreneurship wagon. Women of every age and different social status own businesses because of the flexibility it offers. Life after work is important for many people and being the boss gives you the opportunity to organize your schedule according to your own rules.
#2: The Gender Pay Gap Issue
While some still maintain that the gender gap pay is a fabricated piece of news, according to data collected by the Census Bureau in 2016, women that work full-time are indeed paid 20% less than men.
The situation may be a bit different now, but this is still a pressing issue in many work environments. As a result, women would rather try their skills in a different setting, where they are the ones setting the wages.
#3: Independence & Control Over their Future
Nowadays, things are completely different than they were 30 or 40 years ago. Still, most women who don’t work are dependent on their partner’s income, which can be limiting when it comes to professional development.
Also, having a full-time job today doesn’t mean you’ll be in the same position a day, a week or a month from now. Both men and women who work standard jobs are at risk of being let go or making a bad career decision that can end in an unemployment position.
As such, entrepreneurship offers a way to be more independent and in control of your future (which is a bigger deal for women). Not to mention that with today’s access to technology and education (such as high-quality e-learning platforms) it’s easier than ever to acquire new skills and improve your performance.
So, by having a more flexible work schedule, entrepreneurs have the opportunity to stay ahead of competitors and even outperform big companies with rigid structures.
#4: Side Money
Many women start a small business from the simple desire of making some extra money and/or contributing to the family budget.
The world is full of stories of successful women who didn’t start out to be business owners! They just wanted a way to earn that extra stream of income to make the life of their loved ones a little better. But, as the business started taking off and they found they were passionate about being in charge, their lives changed.
The trick is to believe in your own force (which is a struggle for many women) and never give up, even when things don’t look too bright.
#5: They are Good at It
According to inc.com women outperform men when it comes to return on investment (ROI). The study states that women-led teams usually have a 33% higher ROI than all-male ones. As a result, some investors are only interested in supporting start-ups founded by women (which is amazing news!).
Overall, women are more responsible and take fewer risks when it comes to shady investments. Also, if they are passionate about their field, they’re less likely to give up when things are not going well.
In conclusion, yes, women want and like to be independent and in control of their own lives!
However, this doesn’t mean they don’t need support from their partners or that they will forget about family life once the business starts taking off. Entrepreneurship is just providing better opportunities for anyone interested in having both a life and a career.
About the Author – Oli Kang
Oli is a working mum who has a passion for teaching and all things educational. With a background in marketing, Oli manages the digital channels and content at Courses.com.au.