In China, nearly 70 percent of businesswomen started their own enterprises around the age of 30, according to the latest report published by China Entrepreneur Think Tank in association with Mulan Club Public Welfare Foundation.
'Golden Period' for Female Entrepreneurship
Data shows that women's labor force participation rate increases from the age of 15 and reaches a peak at 20. Regarding marriage and reproduction, the rate decreases after 20 and the age of 35 marks a low. Over time, the participation rates rise again and it reaches a second peak at 50.
Accordingly, polling Chinese women entrepreneurs between 18-57, the survey echoed with the theory. The findings showed that about 28 percent of businesswomen started on their own enterprises between 26-30 and nearly 42 percent established businesses between 31-35.
In addition, experts noted that women's independence and maturity at around 30 promoted their career development.
Compared with the older generation, younger people nowadays are better educated, have broader horizons and better economic conditions, which has also increased their entrepreneurship attempts.
Working Experiences Play Key Roles of Female Entrepreneurship
The report also indicated that since business management is based on professional practices, the accumulation of related working experiences can enhance the success rate of women's startups.
Among women surveyed, over 40 percent were engaged in business before their first startups and the previous work fields have an influence on their entrepreneurial orientation.
Meanwhile, nearly 45 percent chose to start their enterprises based on prior business experiences.
Gender Issues During Entrepreneurship
The survey further showed that in the process of entrepreneurship, women have to pay more than men with regards to time and energy since they may face tougher conflicts between family and career.
Besides, the tradition social norm of male domination in the business world and women's conventional role as a caregiver has also hindered women's startups, said the authors.
Despite the worrisome situation, the findings indicated that a large number of successful female entrepreneurs' husbands have worked in industries related to business and their support and understanding have had a positive influence on women's career development.
Raising Social Capital During Entrepreneurship
When it comes up to the initial funding of women-owned enterprises, about 48 percent funded themselves, with nearly 17 percent raising money from bank loans or venture investments and 18 percent from their friends and family.
In terms of business partners, about 48 percent of respondents chose to start businesses on their own and 23 percent tended to set up businesses with their spouses or family members.
Also, at the early stage of startups, women focused on products, services and their clients instead of publicity and promotion.
Compared with men, women entrepreneurs have narrower social connection networks, which troubled them when looking for cooperation opportunities, say experts.
In order to improve female entrepreneurship, the survey suggested women improve six varieties of their abilities: macro strategy, psychological quality including self-confidence and anti-pressure capability, the integration of social relationships and resources, constant entrepreneurship motivation, learning skills and communication capability.
(Source: Women Voice/Translated and edited by Women of China)