One common challenge women entrepreneurs face is time management. Women often become too involved with other people and their lives, which makes it difficult to focus on their work. They also take on more family responsibilities than men. On the other hand, men tend to be task-oriented and prioritize work over everything else.
Managing work and home responsibilities are challenging for workers of both genders. The COVID-19 pandemic has added to the strain, and societal pressures have made work-life balance an even greater challenge for women. However, there are steps employers can take to improve work-life balance for women.
First, it is important to recognize the importance of work-life balance. Mothers are often sought after by their children for care and support. Consequently, mothers often split their time to accommodate the demands of their personal and professional lives. The increasing involvement of women in paid work and the growing globalization of the global economy has made work-life balance a global phenomenon and is no longer a western phenomenon. While numerous studies have focused on western nations, Lewis has found this phenomenon is just as prevalent among women in developing countries.
Several studies indicate that a woman’s ability to balance work and family life is crucial to her professional development. A good work-life balance program should help women prioritize their work and family responsibilities and support their partners. In addition, flexible schedules and work-from-home or teleworking arrangements can help women better manage their time.
Lack of capital
Lack of capital is among the most common problems facing women entrepreneurs and minority-owned businesses. According to the American Express State of Women-Owned Businesses report, women own 49 percent of the businesses in the United States but account for only 10 percent of the earnings. These disparities have to be addressed to improve the economic situation of minority and women-owned businesses.
One solution is to invest in funds led by women entrepreneurs. One such fund, Aruwa Capital, is a private equity fund in Africa that invests in companies that cater to the $15 trillion female economy. The fund’s founder believes changing the gender balance among capital allocators is a practical solution to reducing the gender finance gap.
The Lack of Fit model argues that raising capital for a women-led business in a male-dominated or numerically minority industry will be difficult. The issue may also be related to gendered expectations. Although there are a lot of women-led startups, male-dominated ventures raise nearly two-thirds of the total venture capital funding. Even female-founded businesses may be more constrained in terms of growth due to their gender and are also more vulnerable to economic downturns.
Groupthink is a problem that women face in business. It occurs in organizations where disagreement is perceived as dissent. When this happens, an organization is at risk of derailment. In a TED talk from 2012, international businesswoman Margaret Heffernan examined this problem in detail. It’s also a problem faced by epidemiologist and physician Alice Stewart.
Groupthink is a cognitive bias in which group members believe their leaders are always right and the group doesn’t think critically. This leads to irrational decisions and unwise risks. It also leads to self-censorship since group members often fail to consider alternative opinions.
In the past century, groupthink has been the cause of much devastation. Diversity of thought and opinion benefits decision-making, but corporate America has slowly embraced diversity. This is due to various factors, including overt discrimination, unconscious bias, hiring for culture fit, and the temptation to favor alignment over dissent. In addition, groupthink tends to occur in a group without its members knowing they are doing so.
Lack of support
Lack of support for women in business is a major challenge for many women entrepreneurs. Despite recent federal relief efforts, many women-run small businesses are struggling. One such example is Cuisine Unlimited, a catering company in Salt Lake City. Its founder Maxine Turner says she does not know if her business will survive if she does not get support from the federal government.
The lack of support women face is largely due to structural inequalities. In many industries, the gender pay gap has been a significant hindrance for women. Furthermore, women are less likely than men to start a new business because they lack the necessary resources. For this reason, women have traditionally been excluded from entrepreneurship and lack the support men need to succeed.
Increasing the number of women in leadership positions is vital for business success. Research shows that having women in senior management positions increases a company’s payout ratio and returns. Increasing female representation in business has also helped women get primed for success. In 2011, for example, women made up more than half of the applicants to business schools and Ph.D. programs and more than seventy percent of the valedictorians.