Confidence key to women in business

Would-be female entrepreneurs are discouraged from starting their own businesses due to lack of self-confidence and support.


Would-be female entrepreneurs are discouraged from starting their own businesses due to lack of self-confidence and support.

Would-be female entrepreneurs are discouraged from starting their own businesses due to lack of self-confidence and support.

These are the findings of a survey of female entrepreneurs conducted by Queen’s University Belfast, on behalf of training consultancy ITS. It found that the male-dominated business environment and a lack of support from friends and family could have a detrimental effect on potential businesswomenÂ’s self-belief.

Women are currently starting up around a third of all new businesses and represent more than a quarter of the self-employed in the UK. But as this survey, and our earlier story, Wanted: Women in business, show, women have a harder time of it than their male counterparts when setting up on their own.

Those responding to the survey highlighted six main difficulties in establishing and building their businesses:

  • a lack of confidence in their own ability to effectively run the business

  • negative attitudes of bank managers towards financing a female-owned venture

  • a lack of support from family, friends and partners

  • problems with outsourcing manufacturing

  • difficulties in marketing or advertising the product or service

  • technical/equipment-related problems

    Olivia May, senior consultant at ITS, says: ‘Female entrepreneurs tend to face far more doubts about the likely success of their business than their male counterparts. These emanate from the wider business and social environment – family, friends, banks, etc – and can easily extend into a lack of self-belief in the entrepreneur.’

    (22/12/04)

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