Feminine entrepreneurship breaks down obstacles round work-life steadiness

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On the one hand, digital entrepreneurship has been the main driver of value creation in the economy in recent decades – it contributes to the spread of scientific progress, Promoting technological innovation, to revitalize business and promote employment. In addition, it is responsible for 40 to 70% of a country’s economic growth, says the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development.

On the other hand, according to the startup accelerator Lanzadera, women are traditionally employed in less technology-intensive sectors or in sectors that require lower initial investments, such as services or fashion. According to UNESCO, this is due to the fact that less than 30% of scientific researchers worldwide are women.

Women have traditionally worked in less technology-intensive sectors or in sectors that require less initial investment, such as services or fashion

Ryan Newton emphasizes that there is also a digital skills problem: “In the fintech world, solutions go to people who already have a bank account, who are already comfortable with the apps,” she says. “Although around 70% of the population in Mexico own a smartphone, only 4% say they have used it for financial services,” she explains. With regard to women, the expert notes that they often have fewer digital skills and tend to be suspicious of digital services.

The report “Entrepreneurship with a gender perspective” says that to narrow this gap, care should be taken to break stereotypes, commit to work-life balance, implement new business models and increase the visibility of female entrepreneurship.

Prudent savers, but with funding problems

A priority is too ensure women have access to tools that promote business creation and longevitysuch as strengthening a network of contacts, using mentoring networks and, in particular, funding sources. For example, when women take out loans, they tend to get less principal and pay higher interest rates, even though they offer more guarantees than men.

In fact, a study by the Business School of the Central American Institute of Business Administration (INCAE) found that while most men in business reported closing their businesses because of poor profitability, Businesswomen said their business failed because of difficulties in obtaining funding. “If a financial product has certain requirements that a woman does not have by default, such as real estate ownership, then she will be excluded from this loan,” explains Newton.

For her part, Valenzuela, who also addressed these factors at BBVA Open Innovation’s Women Talks, explains why women sometimes do not have the assets that can serve as a guarantee for funding: “In humble parts of Mexico, like Oaxaca, notaries recommend you Her inheritance is left only to male family members because daughters end up getting married and sharing their husband’s fortune “.

“It’s not that women are risk averse, we measure it better”

However, the 2019 Women’s Entrepreneurship Report shows that Companies with women leaders operate with more consistent business plans. “Women are not risk averse, we measure it better, we are more inclined to save money and are more firmly on the ground,” says Valenzuela. She adds that during the economic crisis caused by the pandemic, the BBVA found that it wasn’t women who couldn’t pay their debts.

Design with everyone in mind

With the Diversity Days, the financial institution is celebrating a conference that highlights recently implemented projects in this area and draws a roadmap with the challenges and goals for implementing diversity in the Group’s DNA and as a central goal for the future.

There’s even more homework to do for the list of things to do to achieve entrepreneurship equality – listen to everyone and think of everyone. For this reason, the Strategy Director of BBVA advises that it is necessary for financial companies to get rid of hierarchical guidelines. “To design products for every need, you need to allow and teach your organization to listen to the following so ideas will come through.” Ryan Newton adds that every situation should be considered: “It’s not just about identifying inadequacies in what is offered for women, it is about identifying them in every underserved or vulnerable segment.”

Education, for its part, has an issue in the balance – Promoting corporate culture among women to redefine the profile of entrepreneurs. In addition, financial institutions must adopt a gender sensitive approach that takes into account the needs of all niches in the design of products and services so that they can form the basis for new business.

Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), especially the gender equality goals, requires innovative solutions that help break down trends and stereotypes so that no woman is left behind. As journalist and presenter Diane Sawyer says, “Whatever you want in life, other people will want it too. Believe in yourself enough to accept the idea that you have an equal right to it.”

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