Though the climate of inequality for women is progressing to become more mild, it still wreaks constant havoc for women in the business industry. Though we have been fighting to break the glass ceiling for a long time, it is no secret that women still get paid less than men, and the inequalities don’t stop there.
Women are prone to receiving daily doses of sexism through microaggressions and even languaged sexism, both intentional and not. Recently, women have been speaking out about workplace sexual harassment and assault after several women came forward with allegations against Hollywood director Harvey Weinstein.
Beyond hushed and exclaimed confessions of unfair treatment, there are many inequalities put on women in the workplace. The National Association of Women Business Business Owners (NAWBO) reports that over 9 million firms owned by women employ over 7 million workers and make over 1 trillion dollars in sales.
However, Entrepreneur presents an important yet quieted issue that inhibits the ability for women to start their own businesses: the difficulty of receiving investment funds. According to Entrepreneur, businesses owned by women only get 7 percent of venture capital investment money, and “loan approval rates for female entrepreneurs is 15 to 20 percent less than it is for men.”
Of course, the responsibility to fix this problem should not fall on women themselves, but it oftentimes does. In regards to business funding, there are a few ways women can use resources to get the investment capital for their businesses.
Financial experts at Fiscal Tiger provide loan resources for female entrepreneurs who need a boost finding business loans. Their examples of small business loan providers for women include Union Bank, The Tory Burch Foundation, The Small Business Administration (SBA), and The Women’s Venture Fund. These loan providers help decrease the gender gap in business and can be a great place to start looking for funds.
Location can also hinder or boost the possibility women starting their own businesses. A recent study on the best states for women entrepreneurs found that North Dakota, South Dakota, and Hawaii at the top of the list. Though moving to a new state is a risk, it can also be a plentiful opportunity for growth. Though uprooting to a top state in this category is not always necessary — or even moving at all — knowing the lawful requirements to start a business by state can help with the decision.
As with taking on any challenge, fair or otherwise, education is the important first step to success. Knowing your obstacles and finding resources to help you overcome them will give you an advantage in a world full of deterrents.