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Topic: Only 3% of women's businesses reach $1mil- glass ceiling?  (Read 594 times)
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erobbins
« on: April 29, 2008 02:33:29 PM »

As a female entrepreneur, I was kind of appalled at hearing this news considering that the number of women entrepreneurs is increasing at an extraordinary rate, growing at four times the national pace of business formation between 1997 and 2002. Women owned firms now account for nearly 40 percent of U.S. businesses according to the Center for Women’s Leadership at Babson College http://www3.babson.edu/CWL/research/Myths-and-Realities-of-Women-Entrepreneurs.cfm

Is this just another glass ceiling? 

I really believe that better press, increased dialogue and sponsorship—from angel networks to corporations—is the key to establishing a strong women’s network.

And from seeing what the fabulous female entrepreneurs (Sandy Lerner, Cisco; Kay Koplovitz, USA Networks) are doing out there, that change is happening right now.

Let’s discuss, I would love to hear what others have to say about these statistics.  Did they shock you as much as me?
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mom2blu
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2008 07:41:42 AM »

I haven't read the article yet, but frankly that doesn't surprise me at all. Keeping in mind that ANY woman run business is included in the 40% statistic then stats would be way off anyway. Any Jane, Joanne, or Judy selling anything and claiming it as a business counts as a woman run business. It doesn't matter if she is selling $50 a month worth of Tupperware, $50,000 worth of her own product, or even just $5 worth of jewelry, she is included in the statistic of quantity of businesses. If you consider the fact that Tupperware, Avon, Mary Kay, etc etc have Thousands, if not millions (and it probably is millions) of USA ladies that are consultants the statistics make perfect sense. Every consultant for a company counts as a business, so if that Mary Kay lady sells one lipstick a month (very very far from the $1mil you mention) she would bring the statistics down. Imagine how many inactive consultants there are, or people who only buy/sell miniscule amounts just to stay active and that explains the statistic right there.

Plus with one of my existing businesses I don't sell anything (it isn't that type of business) but I still count as a Woman business owner. That affects statistics as well.

In order for it to be a true statistic they would have to consider the exact number of women who run business that involve sales, and ACTUALLY sell items. The number of current female run businesses is often based on major companies (Avon, Mary Kay, Partylite, Tupperware) and the number of consultants they have, plus other seperate businesses (such as yours)

There is also a huge difference between a business and a corporation, which would need to be taken into affect. Tupperware is a corporation, which no doubt makes more then 1 mil a year, but every Tupperware consultant runs a business, some of which make no money at all. That would all need to be taken into consideration as well.

So anyway No that tidbit of info doesn't surprise me one bit, and the only way I think it could really be affected (or improved) is a better study (redo the statistics) in general.
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ChezMichelle
« Reply #2 on: April 30, 2008 07:44:59 AM »

I'll let you know when I reach $1 million (wishful thinking).
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« Reply #3 on: April 30, 2008 09:54:12 AM »

Statistics like these don't give the whole story. If women aren't being "successful enough" it's because they're not ambitious enough, plain and simple.

There's nothing stopping a woman from getting what she wants in business. Only their own fears and self-imposed limitations - and wasteful fretting over the old boy network - is going to slow them down. If you're in business for yourself, you have all the control. You can't blame your success or lack of it on anyone else.
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erobbins
« Reply #4 on: April 30, 2008 04:04:05 PM »

Hey mom2blu! Thank you so much for your well thought out entry. What kind of business do you currently own? I agree that statistics like these need to change. My intention with this post was to create a dialogue between women, and hopefully inspire those who currently own their own business to be more proactive and show our male counterparts just what we are capable of.

Any other women have any opinions on this topic? I'd love to hear what you all have to say!
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« Reply #5 on: May 01, 2008 12:00:31 PM »

I'd love to see that 3% broken down into what kinds of businesses women have. A small etsy store, for example, probably isn't going to be a million dollar company.

I think the glass celing is mostly gone - I'm sure there's still some sexism out there. But the worst bosses I've ever had were catty women. The men I've worked with have been great. And it's not like I have the kind of face that makes men want to promote me Wink
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erobbins
« Reply #6 on: May 01, 2008 04:12:19 PM »

Hey shewolf, I agree I have worked with my fair share of a lot of nightmare women bosses! And obviously there are tons of women in small business that will maybe never achieve $1mil status, but a girl can have dreams right? I encourage all women in business to try out Microsoft's new Office Live Small Business program and share your success stories with me! I love it for my business because it provides most everything I need to run my business. It really is a one stop shop for helping me with all my marketing needs. Any women out there ever try it for their business?
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mom2blu
« Reply #7 on: May 04, 2008 11:09:50 AM »

errobins- my current business is a website where I review products. I have a business: I have expenses, I have to market and face business issues, but there are no sales involved. I simply get products, and review them on my site. It is classified as a business, and I was a wark at home mom and woman business owner, but since there is no income, it really throws off such statistics. 
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HELPPPP I'm addicted to wists!!!!! www.wists.com/mom2blu
erobbins
« Reply #8 on: May 05, 2008 11:52:07 AM »

Hey mom2blu, how was your cinco de mayo weekend? Great I hope!

I'd love to see the link to your business website, what kinds of products do you review? What marketing strategies do you find most effective? Have you ever heard of Susan Solovic? She's an excellent example of women in business acheiving great things! Check out her SBTV.com site, she owns the first and only small business tv network. I love hearing her insight!

Also, I'd love to see you review Microsoft's Office Live Small business program and see how you rate the product, and determine whether or not you think it's a viable marketing tool for small business owners, it's being dubbed the one stop shop!

Talk to you soon, my name is Elizabeth by the way, it's great to speak with you!
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