Women Entrepreneurs & Problems

Women Entrepreneurs & Problems

Entrepreneurship serves as a catalyst of economic development of the country. It is one of the largest sections for capital accumulation. In fact economic growth is the result of the efforts taken by the entrepreneurs. Similarly entrepreneurs can dictate the economic growth by their actions and decisions.

Now many have begun to realize that for achieving the goal of economic development, it is necessary to promote entrepreneurship both qualitatively and quantitatively in the country. Only active and enthusiastic entrepreneurs fully explore the potentialities of the country’s available resources – labour, technology and capital.

Since the 21st century, the status of women in India has been changing as a result to growing industrialization and urbanization, spasmodic mobility and social legislation. Over the years, more and more women are going in for higher education, technical and professional education and their proportion in the workforce has also been increased.

With the spread of education and awareness, women have shifted from the kitchen, handicrafts and traditional cottage industries to non-traditional higher levels of activities. Even the government has laid special emphasis on the need for conducting special entrepreneurial training programs for women to enable them to start their own ventures. Financial institutions and banks have also set up special cells to assist women entrepreneurs, this has boomerang the women entrepreneurs on the economic scene in the recent years although many women’s entrepreneurship enterprises are still remained a much neglected field.

However, for women there are several handicaps to enter into and manage business ownership due to the deeply embedded traditional mindset and stringent values of the Indian society. Lets us look at what these obstacles that are faced by women entrepreneurs.

The problems and constraints experienced by women entrepreneurs have resulted in restricting and inhibited the expansion of women entrepreneurship. The major barriers encountered y women entrepreneurs are displayed in the chart.

The majority of women business owners have had to rely to a significant extent on self generated finance during the start up period of their business. Bank loans and grants have only been used in a minority of cases and have usually been accompanied by some form of self generated finance. The availability of bank credit appears to increase once businesses become established and/or a good relationship with the bank has been developed. Banks are reported to have been more forthcoming in the provision of loans once a business has begun to demonstrate a track record. Because of limited funds, they are not able to stock new materials and spend on advertising.
Perceptions of specialist agencies of the main Problems facing women entrepreneurs

Problems with administrative and/or regulatory requirements were judged to be major issues of female entrepreneurs. Micro enterprises of all types can experience problems in meeting administrative and regulatory requirements, because of the disproportionate effect of compliance costs on small companies compared with large firms. As a consequence, it is not surprising that almost half the support organizations specializing in support for female entrepreneurs identified a problem for their clients in this respect. At the same time, with a few exceptions, administrative and regulatory barriers more significant for female owned businesses than for male owned firms of a similar size.

Women entrepreneurs lacked management skills to a greater extent than small businesses in general, perhaps because of their lower propensity to have had previous business experience Although difficulties in accessing business advice or support appears to be a minor rather than major problem for women entrepreneurs, a significant minority of specialist organizations felt than women are particularly disadvantaged in this respect. Difficulties with language caused problems for their clients or members, with five feeling that women faced specific difficulties in this respect.

A lack of sales and marketing skills was the most commonly reported problem faced by female entrepreneurs, after finance. The fact that this is a characteristic shared with many other micro enterprises and small firms does not make it any less important to female entrepreneurs. It may be seen as part of a general need to raise the level of management skills and competencies in female owned and other small businesses.

Access to technology and problems with intellectual property protection were regarded as problems for women entrepreneurs. The lack of computer knowledge of employees is a major problem as computer skills are a key part of the business. Another firm used computer extensively for word processing, desk top publishing, e-mail and research purposes but saw no value in increasing their use further.

As women are accepting a subordinate status, as a result they lack confidence of their own capabilities, Even at home, family members do not have much faith in women possessing the abilities of decision-making.

To be women and to do something on their own becomes quite difficult for them because of lack of access to funds as women do not possess any tangible security and credit in the market. Before marriage she has to depend on father and after marriage she has to follow the footsteps of the husband. As such, women do not enjoy the right over the property of any form and they have limited access over external sources of funds, even getting loans from either a bank or financial institution becomes exceedingly difficult.

Due to primary household responsibilities towards her family, her time gets divided between the two worlds. She has restricted timings for work due to which, she is not in a position to travel frequently and be away for longer periods. Thus, her mobility is restricted. This also has an implication on business.

A woman is dominated by men in her family as well as business. Often she has to obtain permission from men for almost everything. They are not treated as equals. Her freedom is restricted. She always has to consult and get approval of men.

This is so because right from the childhood, her parents take decisions for her and after marriage her husband takes over. She is protected throughout and thus the risk bearing ability gets reduced.

Woman has to perform multiple roles be it familial or social irrespective of her career as working woman or an entrepreneur. In our society, more importance is being given to male child as compared to female child. This mindset results in lack of schooling and necessary training for women. As a result this impediments the progress of women and handicap them in the world of work.

Agency Report….

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