Where Have All the Women Entrepreneurs Gone?
Looking for the women business starters? Try Ghana. Fifty-five percent of the entrepreneurs in this West African country are women, the only country with more female entrepreneurs than male. In the US, women comprise almost half of the entrepreneurs, but the Washington Post reports that a study shows that western women are less likely to start businesses than women living in emerging economies.
The study was conducted by Global Entrepreneurship Monitor and Babson College using 90,000 women in 59 countries. Women entrepreneur levels varied across all of the countries, from the high level in Ghana to only 16 percent in South Korea.
There are several factors in play behind a woman’s choice in taking on business creation. The study finds that the economic situation of one’s country is one of the larger factors. Becoming a business owner in a developing nation is completely different than becoming a business owner in the US, parts of Europe or Japan. Business startups in developing nations generally require less financing as they are smaller and more necessity focused. Entrepreneurs living in countries such as the US tend to create more service-driven companies that demand a larger investment.
Next, women must consider motivation and need to create a business. Women in western societies often fear giving up a stable job in favor of stepping out on a dream, while women struggling to make money in developing nations simply create businesses to survive.
Lastly, women may also face a lack of role models. In countries such as Ghana, where there are so many women entrepreneurs, it’s easier to see and access the successful business entrepreneurs. In the US, it may be harder to relate to another woman’s business vision and even harder to access the successful women at the top.
So it all boils down to location, job security and access. The most important thing is that women find enjoyment in whatever they choose to do no matter the position or country.