About Entrepreneurship

From UNCTAD

The importance of entrepreneurship

The role of entrepreneurship and an entrepreneurial culture in economic and social development has often been underestimated. Over the years, however, it has become increasingly apparent that entrepreneurship does indeed contribute to economic development.

Transforming ideas into economic opportunities is the crux of entrepreneurship. History shows that economic progress has been significantly advanced by pragmatic people who are entrepreneurial and innovative, able to exploit opportunities and willing to take risks.

Entrepreneurs produce solutions that fly in the face of established knowledge, and they always challenge the status quo. They are risk-takers who pursue opportunities that others may fail to recognize or may even view as problems or threats. Whatever the definition of entrepreneurship, it is closely associated with change, creativity, knowledge, innovation and flexibility-factors that are increasingly important sources of competitiveness in an increasingly globalized world economy. Thus, fostering entrepreneurship means promoting the competitiveness of businesses.

Are Women Entrepreneurs Succeeding in Business?

The title is the topic to discuss in this Category of the site. Are there actually differences between business created and / or managed by women and “men dominated” business?

Do we just need to think about “business” in general, like numbers?

5 + 7 = 12 without any gender distinction. Are businesses the same?

Here I start to research this topic -comments and discussions are absolutely welcome- without a specific agenda but with the commitment to post all my findings.

Let’s start with this blog that I found and inspired the title of this post: “Are Women Entrepreneurs More Likely to Succeed?”

Some figures and comments (that I haven’t checked):

“Women-owned businesses are growing at a phenomenal rate in the U.S.”

  • “40% of all privately held U.S. firms are owned or controlled by women”
  • “Women’s companies are creating jobs at twice the rate of all firms”
  • “Women’s companies are responsible for more payroll than all the Fortune 500 companies combined”
  • “Women’s companies are growing profits faster than all firms”
  • “Women’s companies only get 5% of all venture capital”
  • “Women take on more personal debt to fund their businesses than men do”

It would be good to know the sources of these figures, but from my experience in the Venture Capital industry, the 5% figure is totally realistic.

I managed a boutique VC firm in New Zealand focused in early stage ventures. Only two women presented proposals to the firm in more than three years. Other 6 -8 women were supporting their partners in a sort of joint venture (remember a proposal in Invercargill about an original pram: she was the designer, he was the mechanic) but they were a team, not a “women’s business”.

So I want to highlight this paragraph from the blog:

“A new book by Margaret Heffernan,”How She Does It”, explores what makes women-owned or controlled firms successful...”

According to Heffernan, “As long as women continue to slug it out in traditional companies that were build by men for men, much of their energy will go into fitting into those cultures. It is a big drain on resources. But once a woman runs her own company that drain evaporates. These phenomenal numbers how just how effective women can be when they work on their own terms. They also demonstrate just how much talent those traditional corporations lose when their women give up on them.”

This is a good avenue to follow…

Nicolás Erdödy