Despite making marked advances as business owners, women entrepreneurs across the globe are still facing hurdles, the MasterCard Index of Women Entrepreneurship (MIWE) 2018 report has said.
The report states that there are some deeply surrounded factors such as gender inequality that are limiting women-preneur’s ability to start or grow their business.
The index uses three components made up of 12 indicators and 25 sub indicators, to look at how 57 economies, representing 78.6 percent of the female labour force, differ in terms of the level of Women’s advancement outcomes, knowledge assets and financial access and supporting entrepreneurial factors.
It also noted that there are several aspects of the entrepreneurial conditions that also lead to the performance of women entrepreneurship that includes indicators such as: Ease of Doing Business, Cultural Perceptions of Women Entrepreneurs, Quality of Governance, and Entrepreneurial Supporting Factor.
Further the report says the results show no direct correlation between the women’s development as entrepreneurs and the wealth and level of development of their economies.
As the top 10 leading markets, 7 are upper-middle and lower-middle income. Philippines retained its top spot with a component score of 65.9 (lower-middle income), followed by upper-middle markets Colombia (64.1) and Russia (63.7) in 2nd and 3rd spot, respectively. While Brazil (62.5), Nigeria (62.4), Botswana (61.0) and Vietnam (59.6) assumed 4th, 5th, 6th and 10th placings, respectively.
Meanwhile when compared to other African markets surveyed Botswana leads the charge with the highest rate of Supporting Entrepreneurial Conditions, at 68.1 percent, this is an increase of 2 percent from last year. Indicating that the country has positive Cultural Perceptions of Women Entrepreneurs and Quality of Governance.
Yet, according to Grant Thornton International Ltd’s annual Women in Business report, this is because Botswana took measures that support working women being popular among businesses, including paid parental leave (59% globally, 60% in Botswana), flexible hours (57% globally, 54% in Botswana) and part-time working (54% globally, 26% in Botswana).
Government is viewed to have a significant role in issues surrounding gender diversity, with 68% of Botswana businesses believing that Government and business need to work collaboratively in addressing the issue of gender inequality in business leadership. Furthermore, 68% of businesses in Botswana would like Government to do more to address the issue of gender inequality in business leadership at a legislative level.
Adding that even though businesses in Botswana have implemented many gender equality policies, policies on their own cannot bring about change.
“What brings about change is acceptance and acknowledgement of the economic benefits of gender diversity at leadership level, and educating society to overcome stereotypes about gender roles, “the report stated.