The number of women-owned businesses in the US rose from 7,792,115 in 2007 to 9,878, 397 in 2012 and leapt to a whopping 11,313,900 in 2016. Despite this substantial progress in women’s entrepreneurship rates, steep barriers remain.
Apparently, women still fear failure and this fear significantly affects their participation in entrepreneurship.
Do women fear failure?
Fear of failure is a concern for all entrepreneurs. Still, some research indicates that fear of failure is more prevalent in women than men. During the 2012 Global Entrepreneurship Monitor survey, for instance, female participants reported being more afraid of failure than their male counterparts.
Women also expressed lower perceptions of their entrepreneurial abilities than men.
How fear of failure impacts on female entrepreneurs
According to leading women in business publicationHer Magazine, although there are other barriers for women to become entrepreneurs and excel in business, fear of failure is a top struggle.
Here are the leading ways fear impact female entrepreneurs:
Fewer female entrepreneurs than male entrepreneurs. In nearly all economies, there are fewer women than men-owned businesses. Some of the women who never take the plunge are afraid of trying and failing.
Hesitation to play bigger. Fear of failure also partly explains why female-owned start-ups tend to start smaller and stay smaller than male-owned businesses. Some women in business appear reluctant to scale their businesses or to enter potentially profitable but new and less tested markets.
How to overcome fear of failure
While curiosity is a fundamental component of creativity, it often leads to failures. Fear of failure is normal, but failure is inevitable on the journey to success. Learning such truths about failure turns fear into an asset.
Fear of failure limits women’s entry into entrepreneurship and their overall impact in the world of business. If you are a female entrepreneur or a woman thinking about starting a business, do not let fear of failure hold you back.
Acknowledge your fear and work through it. And if you fail, learn from your failure and continue the journey.