Women entrepreneurs in small enterprises can boost local economy

Women entrepreneurs in small enterprises can boost local economy

To quote the Dalai Lama, “Biologically, females have more potential. And more sensitivity about others’ well being.”

And yet 61% of countries score below 50 out of 100 for encouraging women entrepreneurs. As McKinsey Global Institute forecasted that if women of India are given equal opportunities as men, they could support revenues up to $770 billion in the economy by 2025.


And this cannot be truer than what we have observed in recent times. Women have emerged as a vital cog in the wheel in giving the Indian economy an additional boost. Today, an entrepreneurial woman not only supports her family but also plays a significant role in economic development and social well-being of the society.


Women Entrepreneurship During And After Pandemic


The recent pandemic saw women take on multiple roles beyond wives, mothers and homemakers. The last 3 years saw an unprecedented growth in small businesses mostly run by women who turned their skill and passion into an entrepreneurial venture. This increasing presence of women as entrepreneurs has positively impacted our country’s economic growth. 


India has been home to several leading women owned businesses such as Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw (Biocon), Vani Kola (Kalaari Capital), Falguni Nayar (Nykaa) and Richa Kar (Zivame) to list a few. These women entrepreneurs have played a prominent role by generating employment opportunities in the country, bringing in demographic shifts and inspiring the next generation of women entrepreneurs. 


Institutional Interventions To Support Women Empowerment


Today, the country has witnessed an exponential growth of small business women entrepreneurs and has made provisions to support and promote their development. This enhances a balanced growth in the country. Several initiatives are now available to women entrepreneurs through a mixed ecosystem of schemes, networks, partnerships and communities focussed on supporting women entrepreneurs.


So how do we empower our women to become successful entrepreneurs? There are many ways to assist and support women entrepreneurs so that their businesses take off the ground and become a successful reality.


Shift in mindset


This is the most vital condiment in turning a woman into a woman entrepreneur.  Create an enabling environment for women’s entrepreneurship development and gender equality. Women need to be rid of their internal/external constraints and become conscious and confident to realize their aspirations. Psychological and cultural factors such as gender, financial and social dependency, physical and mental strength, social skills have to be addressed and overcome.


Develop tools and support services for women entrepreneurs


Aid the women with new technology tools, technical R&D and access to other technology solutions that teach life skills. This will help them create and build a sustainable business model that will then create jobs and add wealth to the country’s overall economy.  


Provide them with an easy-access platform 


A platform with a host of business-critical services such as mentoring, legal advice, financial know-how, training. Build the institutional capacity of agencies involved in women’s entrepreneurship development. These value add-ons strengthen the entrepreneurial business, making it more robust and help women entrepreneurs avoid pitfalls.   


Go digital


The last few years have created a paradigm shift where most businesses, partnerships and even conversations have moved from offline to online. Hence budding women entrepreneurs need to harness the power of digital and use it extensively to promote their business, hire people and build their brand.




Support institutions and stakeholders who are keen to invest in women-owned companies, through venture funds, corporate venture, private equity and social capital, with incentives.


Simplify business bureaucracy and administrative machinery 


It’s easier for women to start their businesses with the least amount of unnecessary red tape. This will also promote a sense of confidence amongst women towards the country’s leadership and policy-makers.


We have established that women-led communities give rise to efficient women leaders which boosts economic growth. What is now important to focus on is the kinds of businesses that women can be most successful in. Because even the most motivated women get confused while deciding on the perfect business idea. 


There are numerous business ideas for women, but the best ones would be the one that matches their investment ability, passions and interests, skills and capabilities to name a few key factors.


In conclusion, by investing in women and their communities, states and countries prosper. This generates a multiplier effect and sets a positive example for the next generation of girls. As American author Helen Keller once famously said, “Alone we can do so little, together we can do so much.”


Smile Foundation wants marginalised women to rise up and take complete charge of their lives. With our Swabhiman Programme, you could actively contribute towards these women becoming the change-makers and decision-makers of their lives and the economy of the nation in the long-term. Know more about how you can help here.

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