26 October 2011 by Dan
Karen Gill of everywoman explodes the myth that men
are naturally more adept at being entrepreneurs than women. It's
all a matter of confidence, she says.
There has been much discussion recently of the different talents
men and women bring to business. Depending on what you believe, men
are more aggressive; women consider decisions thoroughly before
choosing a course of action. Men don't wait to be asked to
participate in a discussion, whereas women do; the list goes
Recently I came across a survey which found that 44 per cent of
female entrepreneurs believe their business talent cannot be
learnt. They possess an inherent skill that is innate to their
The survey also found that 82 percent of female entrepreneurs did
not study business nor management topics at school, believing they
were born with their business talent, and 18 per cent had not
obtained higher qualifications after leaving school.
While I agree that many of the talents that make an
entrepreneurial lifestyle are instinctive, such as being outgoing,
good at networking, and being able to operate on a shoestring
budget, I don't believe that these are gender specific.
I think both men and women are equally capable of becoming
entrepreneurs, it's probably more dependent on personality traits
However I find the fact that 18 percent of female entrepreneurs
have not obtained higher qualifications after leaving school
encouraging, because it shows there is a career path for those of
us not academically inclined.
I did not attend university and I have not let that hold me back.
Of course learning core business skills on the job is crucial, such
as accounting skills and 'business literacy'. But for those of us
who didn't attend university it shows that there are still many
opportunities in the world.
The fact that twice as many men as women start a business, could
be a reflection of many men being more confident than women (for
whatever reason) and is something that everywoman is
working to address.
We have recently joined with the Federation of Small Businesses to
encourage more women to set up their own businesses as part of
their Real-Life Entrepreneurs campaign.
While taking the plunge to start your own business can be scary,
it can also be hugely rewarding, and we are working to support more
women in taking that plunge.
Our conference on 1 November in London will be
offering plenty of practical advice and a huge amount of
inspiration for women who are already entrepreneurs, as well as
those considering starting a business.
The first five people to email firstname.lastname@example.org by midday
Friday 28 October will get a free ticket, worth £125 + VAT.