Being an entrepreneur is hard. Being a female entrepreneur is even harder.
After decades connecting with thousands of women entrepreneurs, it’s clear that one of the toughest professions out there - entrepreneurship - is even more challenging for 50% of the population. Having seen it firsthand, I thought we could do something to support this empathetic, hardworking and amazingly creative half of humanity. Not just for them, but for all of us.
The struggle of women has been well documented since the 60’s. This doesn’t mean women have it just as easy as men do now, or that everything is equal in the 21st century. Not by a long shot. After all, the NY Times reported not long ago that there are more men named ‘John’ owning top businesses than there were women. So, there is much progress to be done.
Female entrepreneurs face many challenges, including financial help. On average, women receive 80% less first-year funding capital than men. Yet in most cases, the higher the number of female entrepreneurs a country has, the stronger its economy is. The top five countries for women entrepreneurs are Germany, France, Sweden, Australia and USA. Not coincidentally, these countries have the strongest economies of their region.
Why is this? According to the Kauffman Foundation, women entrepreneurs have three traits that men don’t always have: 1) A more nuanced view of risk, 2) greater collaborative creativity and 3) a better chance of financial success -- as women CEOs usually reinvest profits back into their companies. So, with that in mind we would like to create a special opportunity to help 15 women with bold ideas, and the willingness to try them out.
On the 26th of November, we’ll be running a 15 day iLAB Accelerator in Bali dedicated solely to Women’s Leadership Entrepreneurs. Anyone interested in a better, more dynamic and fairer economy is welcome to join. We will explore all the ways female-backed startups can succeed in the modern world, including challenges and opportunities, while finding solutions to bring their ambitious goals to reality.
We run these iLAB Accelerators many times a year, yet the need to cater specifically to female entrepreneurs has only gotten stronger through the years. A recent report by Dow Jones showed that most successful venture-backed companies in the U.S. had around twice the number of women on the founding team. Yet, on the Dow Jones S&P 500 companies list, only 4% of CEO positions were held by women.
It’s time to do more for them.
During our Women’s Leadership iLAB Accelerator, we’ll provide mentorship from top entrepreneurs (many of them women) who know what it takes to make a business successful. Anyone who joins will learn modern tools and techniques to advance their business. Plus, in the backdrop of our Balinese paradise resort, you can thrive in the company of other female entrepreneurs, eager to motivate each other’s ideas.
Importantly, becoming a full-time women’s leadership entrepreneur is not just about making your professional goals a reality, either. It’s also about freedom and happiness. According to Inc. magazine, “Women entrepreneurs in the US rank their happiness at nearly 3 times that of women who are not entrepreneurs or established business owners.” And, there is even more cause to celebrate.
According to the ‘State of Women-Owned Businesses in the U.S.’ report by Womenable, the number of women-led startups has increased five times faster this decade than the national average. International number are similar, if not stronger. We also foresee this trend growing year after year. Additionally, I’ve personally seen my business ventures gain a lot from having multiple women in leadership positions.
As companies like The Entrepreneurs Institute have gotten larger, we’ve needed more people within who are good at collaborating and communicating between teams. Women are naturally good at this, as well as coming up with innovative, yet realistic ways to solve problems. This is not to disparage men of course, but about creating equal opportunities. And the more opportunities for everyone there are, the better our world will be.
You can find out more about the iLAB Accelerator for Women’s Leadership Entrepreneurs, here.