Article written by Thabo Pitse (ActionCOACH Business Coach – Bloemfontein)
A 2021/2022 report from the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor showed that women displayed 20% less confidence when it came to their ability to start a business vs their male counterparts. What caused this?
Perhaps it was the COVID climate that was intimidating for entrepreneurs regardless of their gender, or the fact that women have been marginalised in the professional world for centuries. Whatever the cause, the lack of confidence is not a reflection of the power women have in business, their capabilities, insights, and skillsets that not only build businesses, but build economies.
Women offer valuable perspectives to business, according to the Harvard Business Review, they outscore men in most leadership skills. When it comes to problem solving, innovation and teamwork; women rank tops. These skills are integral to building sustainable businesses.
As the South African economy, we need women. We need their skills and their impact. Research by Developing Economics indicates that ‘’ women-owned businesses established between 2018 and next year may generate about R175 billion a year and create close to 1 million jobs’’. Could we do with a million more jobs in our economy? Definitely, do we need more women owning businesses? Most definitely.
So, we know that we need women, but how can we encourage and empower women to be in business? The government is attempting to do their part but we as fellow business people, more especially business coaches, have our part to play as well. Society needs a mental shift, both men and women need to recognize and encourage female entrepreneurship. We also need to highlight entrepreneurship as a viable career option for women and young girls and highlight the benefits of being female business owners. Benefits such as independence, financial freedom, time freedom and so forth. In the changing world where the economy has forced both partners in a relationship to work, entrepreneurship has become more of a viable option for women. Furthermore, in the context of South Africa where 42.1% (StatsSA 2021) of households are women-led, a large portion of women have had to become the breadwinner and provider for their families. Women need business just as much as business needs women.
But our economy doesn’t need people running to register businesses and profess themselves to be CEOs without having built something worthy of that title. We need sustainability, profitability, and employability. We need businesses that run and that do so effectively. We need success. And ActionCOACH can coach any business owner to achieve that success. As is the nature of ActionCOACH, when there is a problem, there is a well-researched solution that works and when it comes to achieving success, that solution is a formula: Dreams x Goals x Learning x Plans x Action = Success.
It’s time to take over. For every female entrepreneur who has had the courage to start their own business, it is time to build that confidence and ensure that your business soars to heights that can only be limited by your dreams. Our economy depends on you.