While female founders continue to be outnumbered by their male counterparts, there is no denying the incredible level of opportunity that is out there for those who are willing to dive into the exciting world of entrepreneurship. Women-owned businesses have experienced faster growth than male-owned businesses in recent years and are poised for even greater success in the future.
Much of this stems from female founders’ unique attributes that give them an inherent advantage in doing business. While there are many roadblocks that female founders must often overcome, the benefits of being a female founder in 2023 are well worth mentioning.
1. Unique Perspective
It’s undeniable that female founders bring a different perspective than their male counterparts — especially when it comes to marketing products or services for women.
As Anna Zhang, senior project manager at Gray, says, “I think women are inherently different from men; not better, not worse. As such, we bring different viewpoints from our experiences to the table. When faced with challenges, diverse voices can bring innovative solutions.”
Quite often, a female founder’s unique perspective or experiences results in offering a new product or service that may never have been on the radar at a male-dominated company. And that perspective can result in a highly lucrative business.
That unique perspective can also expand on how the business is run. Dr. Andreea D. Vanacker, the author of Vitality and The Trilogy of Joy, says, “We need to bring more joy and a sense of purpose to our organizations. Creating a profitable business can no longer be our only metric for success. Leaders need to rethink how they can elevate their positive impact on this world for current and future generations.”
2. More Available Funding
Women continue to be underrepresented in terms of venture capital investments. While much progress still needs to be made, female founders have more funding resources available than in the past.
Eugene Yao, founder of Women Venture Capitalists, which accelerates the success of aspiring women venture capitalists, reports that she sees an increased interest in women from over half a dozen adjacent sectors joining the VC industry with many years of operations experience under their belts; indicating that this is a growing industry for women who want to provide other female founders with additional access to funding and guidance by playing a greater role in their success.
Increasing female founders’ access to capital lies in growing the number of knowledgeable female investors so they can support their fellow female founders. According to Yao, “I believe the solution to increasing the amount of funding available to female founders lies in additional mentorship and peer-led resources available to women who want to get involved in the space.”
For example, all-female founding teams saw an 83% increase in total funding dollars received from 2020 to 2021. In addition, over 25% of total capital venture deals in 2021 involved teams with at least one female founder.
Yes, there are still obstacles and disparities in funding for female founders. But there have still been significant improvements that have helped many female founders gain a better start than they would have in the past.
3. Additional Support Groups and Resources
Several resources are now available that offer support beyond just money. For example, the Small Business Association runs several Women’s Business Centers nationwide, specifically designed to help female founders start and grow their businesses. These centers provide valuable resources, including capital and credit access, federal contracts, and business training.
Social media and professional networks have also helped foster connections and mentorship between female founders, helping new entrepreneurs access valuable insights and resources they might not have had ten years ago.
Quite simply, female founders want to help each other out. As Katie Rae, managing partner for The Engine, wrote when launching Female Founders Office Hours, “Our idea is simple: to connect female founders and investors together and create a strong community. Over and over again, I have seen incredible things happen when founders are part of a tight community of people willing to help each other.”
4. Better Collaborators
Research has consistently found that women are better collaborators than men, which can make a big difference in their business results. Rather than adopting a competitive mindset, female founders are more likely to focus on working together to achieve mutually beneficial outcomes. This key strength is tied to many other aspects generally linked as being a “female trait” rather than a male one.
In a study investigating gender gaps in leadership, the University of Buffalo School of Management reported, “We found showing sensitivity and concern for others—stereotypically feminine traits—made someone less likely to be seen as a leader. However, it’s those same characteristics that make leaders effective. Thus, because of this unconscious bias against communal traits, organizations may unintentionally select the wrong people for leadership roles, choosing loud and confident individuals who cannot support their followers’ development and success.”
A more empathetic and collaborative mindset puts female founders in a better position to be truly effective leaders who enhance the performance of their entire team.
5. Skilled Multitaskers
The life of a founder can be hectic, to say the least. Countless activities demand your attention, especially if your business has a small team. Fortunately, research seems to bear out the idea that women are stronger multitaskers, better able to remain calm and organized even when juggling several tasks or projects.
Notably, studies have found that women didn’t suffer as much slowdown when attempting to do two tasks simultaneously and were better at devising effective strategies in a multitasking scenario.
Even though your performance will generally be better when you avoid multitasking, the inherent ability to remain better organized when dealing with multiple responsibilities is an undeniable strength in today’s fast-paced business world.
Embrace the Benefits of Being a Female Founder
Being a female founder isn’t easy. It is a challenging road filled with many ups and downs. But at the same time, there are undeniable benefits to being a female founder. With more and more women taking the lead in the entrepreneurial world, the advantages of female founders will only become more pronounced as time goes on.
Read the full article here