Why We Still Have a Long Way to Go
Being an entrepreneur was a lifelong dream of mine. I've always wanted to be my own boss and run my own company ever since I could remember. While I am not quite there yet, it's encouraging to know that in 2016 there were "9 million women-owned businesses in the U.S." according to Entrepreneur and that women owned businesses have increased at 1.5 times the rate since 2001. These are amazing numbers to hear for any woman entrepreneur, however with our current social atmosphere and the US being one of the only countries with no paid maternal leave, it seems like we still have a long way to go.
The Hard Reality
Women entrepreneurs struggle much more than their male counterparts, in fact women receive less funding for their businesses than men, over $100,000 less. If it's not the fight for funding or equal pay it's the constant harassment that they face online. Some of you may remember Gamergate, where online social vlogger, Anita Sarkessian, faced tons misogynistic comments and what she called "an online mob attack". With constant death threats and online attacks (her Wikipedia page was taken over by these trolls and posted disgusting images and rewrote her bio with nasty words in it) There was an entire online population dedicated to make sure her gaming series never saw the light of day. This didn't work of course and in fact she raised 25 times what she asked for! Below is her TED Talk.
The good news is that we have so much to look forward to in the future with women taking over; In" 2015 to 2016, women's entrepreneurship rates increased by 10 percent on average versus 5 percent for males, across 51 economies that participated in the GEM survey". Ever heard of "together we stand, divide we fall"? Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg has started her own organization called LeanIn, which helps women entrepreneurs to connect with each other to collaborate on ideas and resources for their businesses. Her hope is that women can share their ideas and create businesses that can change the world!
What Does This Mean for You?
As a woman we already have the stack against us in the world, let alone business. It's double the work but in the end we can end the war against equal pay, sexual harassment and online abuse. We shouldn't let our ideas go to waste because our current administration doesn't know what to do with us. The more of us we have to stand against sexism, the better. If you want to get this message across your social media channels, please don't hesistate to contact me today at firstname.lastname@example.org.