Young Women Entrepreneurship Promotion Presented by Dr. Amany Asfour President of Egyptian Business Women Association (EBWA) President of Business and Professional Women –Egypt (BPW-Egypt) Representative of civil society for North Africa in African Union Member of Arab International Women’s Forum (AIWF) Member of international federation of Business and Professional Women (BPWI)
Entrepreneurship • Is a driver for economic growth, competitiveness and job creation, furthermore, it can be a vehicle for personal development and can help resolve social issues.
Who is an Entrepreneur? • Many definitions of entrepreneurs have been developed and one should be clear about what an entrepreneur means. An entrepreneur is essentially a person who is not only self-employed but generates employment and income for others through a combination of efforts requiring zeal and capability to transform physical, financial, natural and human resources for production possibilities to extract the business potential within any situation..
Who is an Entrepreneur? (cont.) • Entrepreneurs should be able to produce innovative goods and services to suit to the market demand as well as earn a profit. Besides the above qualities, women entrepreneurs need to have additional quality in terms of determination and tenacity to cope with adverse situations, which seem to confront the female entrepreneurs more than their male counterparts in a given situation
Situation of Women Entrepreneurship • In spite of the fact that mainstreaming women has been recognized as a priority, the area of entrepreneurship development still contains ambiguity and get less attention and women’s micro credit based income generating activities often are confused as entrepreneurship development. The enterprises owned by women feature some interesting characteristics regarding ownership, management, sources of capital, technology market orientation and so on.
Socio legal situation • Women’s role in the household remains prominent in most of the countries and women’s participation in the business world is difficult. They have to undergo the general constraints that any women would face. The families would encourage home-based activities with less mobility for procurement or marketing. The perception of women being involved in traditional male domain as an entrepreneur is yet to be accepted. Thus, diversification is limited, competition amongst them is high and profit is low. • Lack of access to resources due to the legal barriers to inherit property or social custom inhibit women to prove them to be worthy of credit. Even the family would be comfortable to support a male with higher amount of capital than supporting a female.
A sustainable EnterpriseThe following figure shows the elements that are required to call it enterprise sustainable Technical Viability Market Stability Management Zeal Skill Managerial Vocational Systems Sustainable Enterprise Financial viability Policy support Infrastructural facilities Environmental Sustainability
A sustainable Enterprise • An enterprise needs an environment conducive to take off and sustain and all seven elements are important. But policy support is a crosscutting element that influences the financial, infrastructural, social (skills, systems etc.), market, environment etc. positively or negatively. The role of private and public sector agencies are often guided by the policies, which again are influenced by the traditional attitude and lack of understanding about the needs and situation of women. Therefore, for mainstreaming of gender, it is important that the policies and measures are developed considering the reality of women
Economic Awareness & Women Entrepreneurship • The promotion of women Entrepreneurship is closely linked with their economic awareness & their ability to establish their own enterprises through formal equality exists in the constitution, there are factors that hinder the progress of women Entrepreneurship despite its vast potential, including lack of information, capacity building & Access to financial resources
The Promotion of Women’s Entrepreneurship • It is a means to alleviate women’s unemployment and poverty and also stimulate economic growth. • Women’s entrepreneurship promotion aims at eliminating gender specific barriers which limits women’s capacity to up businesses. These include inadequate access to information ,business networks as well as the traditional attitude towards the gender role
Women entrepreneurship • When starting a business, women often face different barriers and circumstances than men. • They may have to struggle with specific problems and do not participate in support programs to the same extend that men do. • This is despite the fact that women are well educated and have innovative business ideas which will create new jobs and contribute to challenge.
Promotion of Women’s Entrepreneurship Objectives • To contribute to the elaboration of strategies and policies supporting women in using their entrerpreneurial potential. • To raise awareness among regional decision-makers concerning the importance of promoting women’s entrepreneurship. • To develop tools such as financing, incubators and seminars for encouraging potential women entrepreneurs. • To set up regional networks supporting women’s entrepreneurship. • To develop training and education that contributes to creating an entrepreneurship culture for women.
The main three pillars of women’s Entrepreneurship promotion are : • 1 – Creating an enabling environment • 2 – Capacity building and • 3 - Access to financial resources
The way forward Access to Financial Resources Special credit line Guarantee support Guarantee fund Advocacy & Risk Sharing Chambers/Associations Fund Generation Govt., Donor, Private Bank Sources External agencies Government Creation of Enabling Environment Policy Support Revision/formulation (establish consistency) Supportive mechanism (One stop service) Mainstreaming Advocacy Chambers/Association Measures by Government. Banks Promotion of Women Entrepreneurship Capacity Building Associations -Women Entrepreneurs Service Providers -Information-Skills Development Management Technology Marketing Support-Linkage Building Donors/Agencies Technical Assistance Support Services Chambers/Associations-Institutions-Agencies-Private sector
1-Creating an enabling environment • This includes creating an enabling environment through policy support, taking appropriate measures for establishing required support networks and looking at every activities, policies, measures and services from a mainstreaming perspectives. • The objective should be to provide a comprehensive package of components that will contribute towards improving environment of entrepreneurship development in the country.
The Government need to formulate appropriate policies supporting women entrepreneurship development and revise the existing ones to incorporate appropriate provisions. • Advocacy from the civil society groups is essential to influence the policies and the business and professional women as part of the civil society group can play a meaningful role especially in lobbying with the Chambers and associations as well as with the important government agencies. Publicity and advocacy based on proper analysis can be a critical role for BPWs. They can also play a critical role in guiding the entrepreneurs with relevant information, counseling, and other support.
2 – Capacity Building • Capacity building relates to both vocational and managerial capacity including information dissermination etc. Capacity has to be considered in terms of technical, financial and skills etc. This is an area where the civil society groups including chambers, associations, women groups, NGOs etc. for the women entrepreneurs are critical and the business and professional women can develop networks with the relevant groups to influence creation of provision of supports on the basis of identified needs.
3 – Access to Financial Resources • This is the area for all entrepreneurs and the public sector has a comprehensive role to play especially in the areas of policy development, taking specials measures in the area of guarantee support, special credit line, provision of quota in industrial credit etc. • Banks should be oriented to initiate special window for financing women – owned enterprises. • The government should provide policy support for collateral free loan up to a certain limit. It can develop guarantee fund and can accept guarantee by chambers and association etc.
Women entrepreneurship promotion From many important aspects, four key issues in promotion of women entrepreneurship are dealt with • Problem awareness. • Support instruments. • Regional networks. • Education and training.
Problem awareness • Strategies about how to inform political, economic and administrative decision makers with special needs of women when starting a business in order to promote women entrepreneurship and develop to promote a culture of women entrepreneurship.
Support instruments • Evaluation of existing instruments of support for women entrepreneurs and identification of models
Regional networks • Setting up and maintaining regional networks for women entrepreneurs
Ensuring local and national regional & International networking • The creation of networks of the organizations serving women entrepreneurs is very important in order to facilitate their contact with other economic policy organizations.
Education and training • Integration of entrepreneurship into curricula and motivation of women at an early stage through education and developing skills.
Business Education is not entrepreneurship Education. • The opportunity is there for a radical appraisal of the education curriculum to help children to understand is like to run a small business, and, in the case of those in the vocational trades, help them convert the skill into self-employed business; and to prepare young people to work in a flexible manner in small a businesses so that they understand small companies, recognizing that at least a third of the adult work ultimately work in small firms. • Development of enterprising young people, reinforcing and building enterprising behaviors such as opportunity seeking taking and problem solving, as well as by interpersonal skills training and development to build their self confidence, self-awareness and ability to work in groups.
Re-evaluate business education • There is an acute need to recognize that many of the convention traditional business and management education are not appropriate if the aim is to encourage small business development and entrepreneurship. Small business and entrepreneurship education should be entrepreneurial. It needs to be focused on the process and content of enterprise development, from startup, survival, growth or internationalization.
Access to Technology • While technology is being used to assist in delivering information to women-owned businesses, not all have access to such technology. The availability, use of and access to technology differs dramatically. percentage of women business owners uses technology for anything more sophisticated than word-processing . Even with the explosion of online technology, accessing it may be exceedingly costly in many parts of where telecommunication services are metered even for local calls. • The use of technology as an information tool is a great benefit to those with access to it. However, there is real danger of creating a new type of poverty or challenge for women business owners who do not have technology, cannot afford it, or are in areas where the facilities for technology support do not yet exist.
Developing capabilities and skills • The first priority should be to provide opportunities for more women to develop and use their entrepreneurial drive in successfully initiating businesses.
Women Helping Themselves • The potential contribution women entrepreneurs to stabilizing their countries’ economies through job creation makes a strong case for policymakers give a great attention to them . But if women are to succeed as leaders in business, then they are going to have helped themselves by building strong networks and associations to serve as their tools.
Women’s Entrepreneurship Development • WED is the generic title given to action programs addressing specific problems encountered by various women groups • The initiative for developing such programs was based on several assumptions : • Few of the women who assumed the risk of starting their own business benefit from programs that increase their capabilities and skills in running a small business venture. • Few business women have access to updated information about available financing schemes and apply for them. • Many women are seeking economic independence but few of them have the courage & proper knowledge to create their own business enterprises. • Very few women entrepreneurs are aware that they could help themselves and contribute to the policymaking process by establishing their own effective associations.
Women’s Entrepreneurship Development According to ILO (International Labour Organization) Developing the knowledge base Developing support services Promoting advocacy and voice WED
Women’s Entrepreneurship Development According to ILO (International Labour Organization) • I ) Developing the knowledge base • It is important to have a through knowledge of the situation facing women entrepreneurs – the problems as well as the opportunities. In particular we identify the strategic and practical needs of women entrepreneurs. This enables us to identify innovative and effective means of support for women in business.
Lessons Drawn from Working Papers Included : • In both the formal and informal economies, women entrepreneurs account for a large number of enterprises. They require business support services, rather than support in the form of welfare or charity. • In some countries, women experience barriers mainly at the stage of entering into business. Once established, they face many of the same problems common to all entrepreneurs. • Women have difficulty accessing finance, and even when they do so they obtain smaller loans than men. • Networks and associations of women entrepreneurs can provide much needed support for new and emerging women entrepreneurs, and they are well positioned to establish women’s business centers. • Support for women entrepreneurs needs to take account of women’s reproductive and household responsibilities, as well as existing gender relations and roles between women and men. • Women’s mobility is limited in terms of often having to work close to home, having limited access to transport, and they have personal security considerations.
II ) Developing support services for women entrepreneurs. • Lessons emerging from work on the services include: • Support for women entrepreneurs should be provided with the knowledge, support and participation (where appropriate) of male family members. • Women require more awareness of market information and marketing approaches, as well as modern means of distribution, to enable them to have greater access to national and international markets. • Where possible, integrated approaches to the economic empowerment of women should be developed, including support for literacy, skills training, legal rights, heath education combined with entrepreneurship, access to credit and skills training.
III) Promoting advocacy and voice for women entrepreneurs. • It is important that women entrepreneurs are able to advocate effectively for support, and that their voice is heard by policy-makers. • Advocacy and voice need to be promoted at all levels, including creating a more positive attitude towards the role that women entrepreneurs can and do play in economic development . • Lessons emerging on the Advocacy include : • Many women – especially young graduates and school-leavers – need to be made aware of entrepreneurship and enterprise development as positive career options. • By developing a systematic knowledge base and compliing facts and figures on the status of women entrepreneurs, women entrepreneurs’ voice will be taken more seriously by policy-makers
The Need for Associations • In the democratic policymaking process, women’s voices need to be heard. The most efficient way of in the policymaking process is through independent, private, and nonprofit institutions created by women themselves. Through their associations and grassroots initiatives, women can exert political influence legislative proposals that affect their interests. They can • Educate government agencies about the growing importance of women entrepreneurs, • Exert pressure for the creation of government programs to support entrepreneurs or • Lobby directly for institutional changes that support women.
Women’s Business Organizations : The Hidden Strengths and Potential • The challenges women in business face are a matter of intense debate today. These challenges are common worldwide. The impact on women business owners may differ according to location, culture, ethnic barrier economic policies, and other such influential factors, but the challenges remain essentially the same. • The obstacles women entrepreneurs face are well known ,they have experienced the effect of at least one of these challenges : • access to finance • access to markets • access to information • access to training • access to and influence on policymakers • By creating public awareness, establishing pressure groups, educating the public, financial institutions policymakers, companies, and other organizations with a vested interest in assisting women entrepreneurship women’s business organizations can become powerful lobbying tools while providing a higher level of their members and increasing membership. It is fundamental for those in a position to assist women & owners to understand that supporting them is not charity- it is economic development .Women’s business organizations can become the most effective vehicle to get this message across to decision makers who can make a difference
Business Women Organizations Common Objectives • Almost all countries have same kind of women’s organizations to bring together women business owners. The mandates of these organizations may differ, but usually have the same priorities as : • Promotion of women business owners and the issues which are important to them • Member support and networking opportunities • Education, training, and professional development • Effective lobbying and advocacy • Business matching and increased business opportunities • National & International Exposure & cooperation.
What is the Impact of support for women’s entrepreneurship development • More jobs for women, and created by women entrepreneurs • Better jobs for women, and in women owned enterprises • Higher profits of women-owned enterprises, and more income for their families • Contributing poverty alleviation • New knowledge on inequalities affecting women in establishing and running their businesses • More representation of women entrepreneurs in policy-making bodies and associations of employers and workers • Developing innovative and replicable approaches on WED • Effective strategic alliances
Role of the Government & NGOs in Egypt to promote Women Entrepreneurship and to eliminate any forms of Economic violence against women.
A- National Council for Women • The National Council for Women (NCW) was established by Presidential Decree No. 90 in the year 2000 as an independent institution under the Presidency of the Republic. • The Council is honored to have Her Excellency Mrs. Suzanne Mubarak, First Lady of Egypt, as President . • The presidential Decree, Article 1 stipulates proposing public policy matters for society and its constitutional institutions on the development and the empowerment of women to enable them to play their social and economic role and to integrate their efforts in comprehensive development programs.
A- National Council for Women • To implement the mandate set forth especially in the area of the economic empowerment of women, the Council has adopted several model programs, one of which is The Women Business Development Center (WBDC) initiated through an agreement signed between the NCW and the US Agency for International Development (USAID). • Its Mission is to enhance skills and capabilities of Egyptian women in the field on small business enterprises in order to facilitate their dynamic participation in the development of the national economy. • Provides training Services, and Business Counseling.
B-NGOs • B - NGOs • Including Egyptian Business Women Association , BPW – Egypt, other NGOs working on Economic Empowerment of Women to have the Power of Choice & Voice. Through • Training Courses Capacity Building • Technical Assistance & Support Services • Advocacy • Legal Services • Networking with regional & international Business Associations. • Organization of conferences & fairs for exchange of experience, • business contacts & promotion & marketing of products. • Awareness Campaigns through Media, conferences, seminars for the need of girls education & the necessity of the democratic raise up of the girl child & the elimination of any form of discrimination between her & her brother child.
Education of Girls : • The National Council for Women & National Council of Childhood are also implementing a very big campaign for Education of Girls in Collaboration with Ministry of Education & NGOs.
Trainings available include: • How to start and manage your own small business • Diverse Marketing Techniques • Management and Finance • How to design a comprehensive Business Plan. • Crisis Management and Communication Skills • Tailored training sessions based on the needs of clientele. • Tailored training sessions to improve the skills of fresh graduates
Conclusion • Yong women entrepreneurship promotion • Being an Entrepreneur • A personality which depends on different factors • 1 – Environment & way of raising up the girl child • Family & parents • Culture & Society • 2 – Education • School • Higher education • 3 – Economic Awareness • 4 – Private sector policy & governmental support • 5 – Developing skills • 6 – Training courses. • 7 – Networking • 8 – choice of field of business • 9 – Membership in business organizations & affiliation to regional & international business organizations