The saying ‘It’s a man’s world’ is slowly becoming redundant as women are forging into more and more industries that were said to be only for men. Engineering, Politics, Marketing, Finance; one can see women leaders succeeding in every sphere. But even though the world has come a long way in providing women their due, there are still a lot of challenges that women face in the entrepreneurial world.
1. Lack of role models
As the entry of women in entrepreneurship is quite recent, there are only a select few you can look up to. Therefore, there is a scarcity in guidance and inspiration for women. Male entrepreneurs can also be good role models but the day to day challenges that women have to face are very different from those that men face. Therefore, for any woman trying to make a mark in the entrepreneurial world it is more relatable as well as aspirational to look up to a leading woman than a man. Successful women entrepreneurs like Shahnaz Husain, Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, Vandana Luthra, Suchi Mukherjee and Meena Ganesh are the ones who truly inspire.
2. Time Management
Some would say it’s only fair for women to have 48 hours in a day to keep up to the work tasks thrown at them. In our current society, a working woman is expected to not only do her job well but also live up to motherhood, wifehood and maintaining a good family life, and all this while also looking their best at all times. The perception of women since centuries has been that of a home maker and even though it is slowly changing, it will take time for the traditional gender expectations to fade out and for men to become equal partners in household chores. Until then, it becomes important for budding female entrepreneurs to become experts at managing their time.
3. Understanding the importance of Networking
Talking to people in the same sector and getting their insights, tips and hacks goes a long way in entrepreneurial success. Connecting with mutual friends and getting advice or business recommendations becomes a key contributor to success. However, sometimes women entrepreneurs might skip over the importance of networking. It’s important to take the first step to make new connections in a meeting, conference or event that you attend the next time.
4. Decision Making
In the entrepreneurial world it is of upmost importance to make strong decisions with complete conviction and direct all your efforts towards that. However, since childhood, some women face the issue of being put below their male counterparts in the priority list. A lot of decisions are made for them and hence when it comes to taking critical business decisions, it becomes difficult for them to do this confidently. In such cases, it is advisable to initially reach out to mentors and experts for some advice.
5. Money Matters
It is true! It is more difficult for women entrepreneurs to get funding as compared to their male counterparts. Male investors unintentionally prefer people who match their mind-set and abilities and sometimes women just don’t make the cut. It is also harder to get funding since it’s assumed that women lack the perseverance and may decide to call it quits at any time. The prejudice that women will always cater to their family first makes investors sceptical about funding a woman-led company. For women entrepreneurs, it becomes vital to be forthright and showcase a strong business acumen and intention to make it big despite all odds to get successful with funding.
Women Entrepreneurs can be exceedingly successful if given a chance at equal opportunities. A keen awareness of the challenges faced by them can lead to policies being formed to benefit in this area.