Pearl Maphumulo, managing director of The Business Development Agency, who recently spoke at an event supporting local small business owners, says that after working with entrepreneurs from rural, township and urban areas alike, she discovered that many South African women she has come across don’t seem to have as much confidence in themselves as business leaders compared to men.
“This could potentially be attributed to a cultural stigma which needs to be broken. In order to do this, I believe that women venturing into entrepreneurship need to be supported not only on a technical level but an emotional and psychological level as well.”
“If we ignore addressing the emotional and psychological barriers that hinder women in becoming entrepreneurs and resilient leaders, we risk missing the opportunity to inspire change and make a real impact in our country. After all, entrepreneurs are human, and when the human thrives, the entrepreneur in them flourishes tooIn order to assist aspiring female entrepreneurs in South Africa to start and grow a business, Maphumulo gives the following advice:
Instead of duplicating an already over-saturated market, think of ways to do what you do differently.
There’s so much available for you to equip yourself.
In the very beginning, entrepreneurs pretty much run the entire ship on their own until such a time that they are in a position to hire more people. This can result in decision fatigue which could cost a lot when you’re the main and only decision-maker in the business.
Another common mistake made by entrepreneurs is failing to separate your business and personal finances, so be intentional in equipping yourself with this knowledge, it’ll save you many headaches.
Jolawn Victor, head of emerging markets at Intuit QuickBooks agrees with this sentiment.
“We look forward to providing continued support to local South African women in order to drive prosperity at all levels. Women-led businesses are a force to be recognised and the more women are supported both emotionally and technically, the more their businesses will grow and succeed,” she concludes.
Download the Mastercard Index of Women Entrepreneurs report. (PDF File: 36.1 MB)