It made for a startling discovery when I discovered (data –driven, off course) that there is a marked difference in the attitudes of female and male Small Business entrepreneurs. In the course of monitoring and supervising participants who were writing their business plans I was hit with a stark variance between both sets of entrepreneurs. This character trait, although seemingly insignificant, eventually cascades into how they run their business and then extrapolates into their businesses success.
This study was undertaken within a six-month period in the Enterprise Development Centre where I facilitate business courses. Data revealed that despite the fact that the Entrepreneurship Development Centre had an average male to female enrolment ratio of 65: 35 I found out that the actual submission of business plans by participants was slightly ten percent higher for females. (See Figure 1 below) This revelation made me look further and I unearthed the following attitudes which women have that men need.
Figure 1: Participants’ Enrolment and Actual Business Plan Submission in percentages
So what do womenpreneurs have that menpreneurs lack?
I crafted out a list that you may not necessarily agree with but it is the result of more than six months of diligent research and findings. And they are…
1. Pride in lowly jobs:
I was in a vehicle moving from Ojota to Ojuelegba along the ever bustling – never sleeping – Lagos mainland when my attention was drawn to the traders hustling – no eking out – their daily sustenance by the side of the road and guess what? You know already, women were 80% on the side lanes having makeshift tables and selling without an iota of shame.
It is worthy of note that this figure changes drastically when we compare male to female vendors who roughshod life on the busy Lagos roads with their wares on their head then the figure drastically changes.
However, this variation may not be unconnected with the hazards of on-the-road hawking of goods and the Lagos state directive banning this economic activity. Moreover, this set of sellers is usually younger persons between the ages of sixteen to twenty unlike the earlier scenario (roadside sellers)
Figure 2: Percentage of male to female roadside sellers
2. A Driving Force:
Something drives both men and women, but what drives women is more fitted to micro-businesses compared to men. Our dreams are big along with the engines that drive us, but the truth is that the informal sector of the economy contributes more than 50% of Nigeria’s Gross National Product (GNP)1 and more women have rolled up their sleeves to work in this sector.
3. Grit & Resilience:
I brought this (and the above issues) to the focus of my colleagues when I asked them in January if they noticed that more women stuck around in our offices than men? Pardon me womenfolk but let us be frank, more men know how to operate a computer and use Microsoft Office than women but the persistence of women means that they stick around and finish their business plans with computer software tools that they are not overly familiar with. The men? They pop in and out and fizzle out, usually never completing their plans.
It is the women participants who usually stay a longtime after classes have closed to work on their business plans. Yes, some of them have husbands and children to attend to but somehow they find the time to do something they know is important to the success of their enterprise. For six months I don’t recall seeing a male participant doing “overtime”.
Continue reading “What Female Entrepreneurs Have that Male Entrepreneurs Need”
The striking similarities between War and Business are exposed in this e-book by the business author, Airende Emiaghe. In this blog we will have a glimpse at the book through the first two chapters. If you find it interestin,g you may request for the whole book FREE by commenting or critiquing this first two chapters on the blog. This offer is for the first 50 persons.
CHAPTER ONE: PLANNING
Airende Emiaghe says: Assuming business to be an art of war is vitally important for the success of any business concern.
Business is a matter of life and death, although very few people consider it to be so to their own undoing. It is a battle between servitude (paid employment) and freedom (entrepreneurship). Understanding and realizing it should be our topmost priority.
There are 5 factors to consider when making business decisions prior to setting up your business and whilst executing it;
(i) Moral Law (ii) Heaven (iii) Earth (iv) The Commander (iv) Method and Discipline
The Moral Law guides the morality of our choices and decisions in business.
Moral Law is the law of unity of purpose between the business man and his passion which becomes his business. Between indulging in business practices that weighs heavily on the pockets and on the conscience.
Heaven signifies economic conditions that are outside the control of the business owner.
Earth signifies economic conditions that Continue reading “Business, An Art of War: a business adaptation of Sun Tzu’s The Art of War”
The Entrepreneur; Succeeding with Bible-Principled Strategies.
This piece is for people who have made up their minds to let go of salaried work and forge ahead on their own in the business world. It is a rule book for people who have agreed to become entrepreneurs and need a sure-fire way to succeed. You will find answers here. However, we are compelled to take some few paragraphs in our introduction and make you understand why you need to be your own employer, if you are not yet fully convinced or consolidate your decision if you have decided to. The reasons are varied but simple and of course they are lifted straight from what the bible prescribes. A portion of the life story of a slave boy tells us all we need to know about servitude which is what paid employment is veiled as. Genesis 39 has the necessary narration;
1. And Joseph was brought down to Egypt; and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites, which had brought him down thither.
2. And the LORD was with Joseph, and he was a prosperous man; and he was in the house of his master the Egyptian.
3. And his master saw that the LORD was with him, and that the LORD made all that he did to prosper in his hand.
4. And Joseph found grace in his sight, and he served him: and he made him overseer over his house, and all that he had he put into his hand.
5. And it came to pass from the time that he had made him overseer in his house, and over all that he had, that the LORD blessed the Egyptian’s house for Joseph’s sake; and the blessing of the LORD was upon all that he had in the house, and in the field.
6. And he left all that he had in Joseph’s hand; and he knew not ought he had, save the bread which he did eat. And Joseph was a goodly person, and well favoured.
Paid Employment is Slavery.
and Potiphar, an officer of Pharaoh, captain of the guard, an Egyptian, bought him of the hands of the Ishmeelites
Paid employment is limiting and inhibiting because you have been bought for a price. Continue reading “THE ENTREPRENEUR”