“She is a woman! Stringed to the ground so deep that she can’t fly” is the common perspective accepted by the society. Our country has seen several inspirational women at great heights through many challenges. Be it PV Sindhu’s performance at the 2016 Rio Olympics or Indra Nooyi, an India-born business executive; CEO of Pepsi, who is now one of the Most Powerful Women in Business in the world. Below are some of the challenges we have noted:
At a very young age, girls are taught that the hassle and tumbles of doing business or sport is just the domain of men. Especially, in the rural and semi-urban areas, where girls are brought up to only taking care of the house. For them exploring careers is not considered as an option. This further agitates them into isolation and lowers their self-esteem for achieving success. The family needs to be supportive for every girl to pursue her dreams.
Another hindrance in the journey of succeeding for women is dealing with the legal formalities and working in a system that is corrupt and biased. Economic Times mentions lack of government support, system bias and corruption as one of the challenges faced by women entrepreneurs.
Funding and Financing
It turns out to be a herculean task for women entrepreneurs to seek funding and finance. Attitude of banks and financial institutes mostly do not readily allow them to grant loans to women for business. Difficulty to access formal, easy, collateral free and transparent financing is a major problem area for women-led start-ups. Lack of financial support and credit resources provide a setback for women. A market research shows that less than 3% of the women started Start-ups get funded by Venture Capital funds.
Limited Mentoring Opportunities
Absence of guidance as to how a women aspiring to become an entrepreneur could achieve her goals and dreams cause several women to step down. Women require mentoring regarding the required skills and qualifications required to be able to step into the business world and also how to deal with existing male-dominant competitive market. It is utmost crucial to address these gaps in knowledge, skills and attitudes through capacity building programmes. Recent trends in India have improved and there are many women focused accelerators and incubators in the country to help Women Entrepreneurs
Lack of Formal Work spaces
Women have restricted mobility due to their family ties or could be their commitment towards children. The lack suitable work spaces around their home posses a big challenge. A single lady looking for an office space is often a bottle neck to move forward. The new trend of shared offices and coworking spaces which gives the women completes flexibility in location, prices and the fact there is no-lock in required and energized women entrepreneurs and freelancers to explore options of doing business.
Women empowerment becoming a crucial social issue is leading to various schemes and training plans for women. Irrespective all challenges faced, the Indian women entrepreneurs stand strong and pursue their dreams.
Another challenge faced by women entrepreneurs include being exploited by middlemen. Due to lack of resources to market their products to a large community, women entrepreneurs and start-ups have to depend on middlemen for their marketing. E-commerce has however reduced the difficulties faced; however unavailability of internet does not eradicate this problem completely.
Space Whiz is an online portal of work spaces like commercial offices, co-working spaces, private cabins, conference rooms and training rooms. The company's mission is to accelerate the new sharing economy & make managed offices available to the growing community of Entrepreneurs, Professionals and Start-ups for the purpose of renting/leasing at an affordable price and multiple locations options.This author has published 13 articles so far.