Challenges Facing Women in Business

March 11, 2010 by Susan Gunelius
Female Entrepreneurs

Post by Veronica Eyenga, contributing Women On Business writer

Inevitably, all business owners will face challenges now and then.  However, women business owners tend to face them a little more often than their male peers.

This does not mean that women business owners cannot be successful; statistics show that the success rate for women entrepreneurs is growing rapidly.  It simply means that they’ve learned to overcome major challenges.

Some of the biggest challenges women entrepreneurs will face fall into three categories:

  1. Gender discrimination and stereotyping: Gender lines are clearly drawn during childhood and often extend into adulthood with constant messages that women do not belong in the corporate world.
  2. Dual career-family pressures: Many women start their own businesses so that they can spend more time with their families.  For some, maintaining a work-life balance once a business takes off only adds to the pressure of owning and running their own business.
  3. Lack of equal opportunities: Despite the fact that women are slowly moving in to male-dominated industries, they still face immense challenges when it comes to things like securing financing and business success rates.

Thankfully, these challenges are not always detrimental to women-owned businesses.  Because women are often naturally skilled at negotiating, delegating, and multi-tasking, they can fight through these challenges to success.

In addition to these inherent skills, women in business can choose to face challenges heard on in several ways as well:

  1. Create a strong network: Build a network of women entrepreneurs that you can trust.  These relationships can be used to build a support system, share ideas, and build your businesses.
  2. Consider a woman-owned certification: A woman-owned certification can be your company’s gateway to federal contracting and the significant advantages that come along with securing government dollars.
  3. Stay positive, get involved: Stay up to date on current issues and trends in female entrepreneurship.  Work with your fellow women entrepreneurs to overcome challenges and remain strong in the face of adversity.

Every business owner will face challenges now and again.  As women business owners, we’re more likely to face challenges than others.  However, if we’re prepared and know how to overcome these challenges, nothing can stop us from continued growth and success.

Susan Gunelius

Susan Gunelius is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Women on Business. She is a 20-year veteran of the marketing field and has authored ten books about marketing, branding, and social media, including the highly popular 30-Minute Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing for Dummies, Blogging All-in-One for Dummies and Kick-ass Copywriting in 10 Easy Steps. Susan’s marketing-related content can be found on Entrepreneur.com, Forbes.com, MSNBC.com, BusinessWeek.com, and more. Susan is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She has worked in corporate marketing roles and through client relationships with AT&T, HSBC, Citibank, Intuit, The New York Times, Cox Communications, and many more large and small companies around the world. Susan also speaks about marketing, branding and social media at events around the world and is frequently interviewed by television, online, radio, and print media organizations about these topics.

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