Post by Veronica Eyenga, contributing Women On Business writer
According to WomenEntrepreneur.com and The Center for Women’s Business Research, the number of woman-owned businesses is on the rise. The biggest noticeable difference? Not all woman-owned startups are service industry based, a trend that dominated the last decade.
That’s right. With every new woman-owned company that pops up (in 2008, there were more than 10 million woman-owed companies), more and more are entering into male-dominated industries such as the technology and manufacturing industries.
In fact, according to the Center for Women’s Business Research, 32% of women business owners believe that being a woman in a male-dominated industry is beneficial.
Specific statistics about women in these industries is hard to come by. However, the women in them insist that their numbers are growing; they just aren’t receiving the attention from the press.
This growing trend is extremely promising. As we move into the second decade of the 21st century, it’s time for us to encourage our fellow woman entrepreneurs not be afraid of entering male-dominated industries.
Are you a woman entrepreneur in a male-dominated industry? Share your advice in the comments.
Kate Putnam says
Being in a male dominated industry is not that easy- at least in machinery manufacturing. Stereotyping is still strong and people are still looking for my husband or male partner. If I were not taller than most men, I would be talked down to literally as well as figuratively. The number of times I have said something only to have it ignored and then heard it repeated (without attribution) and endorsed by males is uncountable. The problem is not within my own company, and seldom from customers, but from other potential partnering companies. In 14 years, my referrals within my industry have come from another woman owned company.
The benefit to being a woman in my industry is the ability to think differently and to draw on different resource, but we are clearly not part of the “old boy” network, which is not age related.
I would not recommend being afraid to enter my industry but I would recommend having suitable expectations.
I would also recommend having a strong network of women CEOs, because it is not unique to my industry.