According to a recent study, businesses run by women are more successful than similar male-run firms, but women are less likely to flaunt their success.
The number of female business owners and entrepreneurs has grown rapidly in recent years. On average, companies run by women are announcing larger pre-tax profits than companies run by men, while the figures indicate that entrepreneurial women are downplaying their successes.
According to research conducted by the University of Cambridge and Barclays, 62% of men believe that their business is prospering, compared with only 42% of women.
But the study also discovered that women are more aspiring and ambitious in business than men, as 50% of those surveyed were keen to launch another business within the next few years, whilst less than 20% of men had the same ambition.
Slow and steady business growth
According to the study, one possible reason why women are enjoying better business success is the tendency of these business owners to take things steady and slow.
Their male entrepreneurial counterparts are more likely to take greater risks in order to grow their business rapidly, without considering an exit route. Women, however, typically avoid taking on too much risk at once, and instead plan for controlled growth.
Female entrepreneurs are also more likely to ask for help with their business than men, including collaborating with those with greater experience and conducting research on work-related questions, thus leading to a greater chance of success.
Women are found to be more diligent and persistent in business dealings in general, with a greater tendency to perfectionism compared with their male counterparts.
Greater time spent on organisation and concentrating on the details of deal by many female entrepreneurs is thought to contribute to the success of their business.
Women have also been found to be more likely to focus on creating a support network for their business, which in turn aids their success. Entrepreneurs that are open to advice, discussion, support and collaboration will often find it easier and may well be more successful than those who try to go it alone.
This latest study certainly helps to contradict the common but false perception that entrepreneurs are independent and fearless radicals. Although motivation, autonomy and achievement were all recognised as key personality traits for entrepreneurs, so were more underrated qualities such as introspection.
According to the research team from the University of Cambridge, the findings appear to disprove the stereotype and myth of the superhero CEO. Although the average CEO clearly differs from the average worker, entrepreneurs are extremely varied, diverse and frequently misunderstood.
The study questioned over 2,000 workers, including those who had launched their own business, alongside those who had not. The research team gathered responses from UK-based employees and entrepreneurs, as well as those based in Singapore, the United States and Germany.
The research focused on three groups: women, seniors and migrants. Besides the interesting findings on female entrepreneurs, the research team also discovered that older CEOs are on average more artistic, extroverted and liberal than younger business-owners. However, CEOs born abroad were found to be on average more conservative.
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