As we approach Mother's Day, a special day to celebrate and honor all mothers, motherhood, and maternal bonds, we can't help but ponder of the impact of moms in the professional and business world and how mompreneurship has been changing since the pandemic. Mother's Day is a day to express gratitude and appreciation for the sacrifices and hard work that mothers do every day. This day is not limited to stay-at-home moms but also extends to working mothers, mompreneurs, and female mom entrepreneurs who juggle their professional and personal lives to maintain work-life balance.
More than half of women with children are interested in entrepreneurship.
The rise of mother entrepreneurs aka Mompreneurship
In recent years, entrepreneurship has become an increasingly attractive option for working mothers looking to balance work and family life. According to a recent survey by Shopify (the leading platform for entrepreneurs to start e-commerce), more than half of women with children are interested in entrepreneurship. Of the mothers surveyed who are not already business owners, 44% said they're either slightly or moderately interested in starting a business and becoming entrepreneurs. And in fact, one in six mothers indicated they're very interested in starting a business.
As COVID-19 gripped the economy, women's labor force participation rate dipped to its lowest level since 1988.
The impact of COVID-19 and the pandemic on female entrepreneurship and the workforce
The surge in women entrepreneurship has been fueled by groups that have been traditionally left out, like women and people of color. During the pandemic, need and opportunity combined to fuel the explosion of entrepreneurship among women. As COVID-19 gripped the economy, women's labor force participation rate dipped to its lowest level since 1988, and mothers left their jobs to care for children stuck at home due to school and daycare closures. For many women, launching a business was the best option available to regain control of their careers and bring in needed income, while maintaining the flexibility to care for loved ones during lockdown.
Nearly 40 percent of women who started a new business in 2020 did so as a direct result of the pandemic
Mompreneurship rises within diverse populations
Gusto, a Payroll company, developes a study that found that nearly 40 percent of women who started a new business in 2020 did so as a direct result of the pandemic. Minority women, who were hit hardest by pandemic layoffs, were more than twice as likely as other women to say they'd become an entrepreneur because they were jobless or concerned about their financial situation. These women also turned to entrepreneurship because they needed more flexible work hours and the ability to determine their own schedules. Nearly three in five female entrepreneurs named this as a top reason they set out on their own in 2020, while more than a quarter of female business owners with school-age children said they launched their company in 2021 because of increased care responsibilities.
Mom entrepreneurs are not in it for the money
Women entrepreneurs are not just in it for the money. According to a recent study published by the Global Entrepreneurship Monitor, in 2021, women's Total Early-stage Entrepreneurial Activity (TEA) rate was 15.2% in the United States, up from 13.6% in 2020. Motivating many of these women entrepreneurs was the desire to make a difference - a staggering 70.5% of those surveyed.
70.5% of female entrepreneurs have "making a difference" as one of their reasons that motivate them.
Women entrepreneurship around the world and female access to funding
Women entrepreneurship is also growing around the world, but obstacles remain and men still outnumber women 3-1 when it comes to business ownership, say experts. The World Economic Forum's Global Gender Gap Report 2022 shows more women than men continue to be impacted by the pandemic.
Despite the many challenges that women entrepreneurs face, including the gender pay gap, lack of access to capital, and societal pressures, the rise of female entrepreneurship has been critical to the economy.
The financial value of women's unpaid care work is estimated between 10 and 40% of GDP, and two-thirds of this work is assumed by women, specifically mothers.
The role of working moms in the economy and society
Working moms are critical to a thriving economy, and it's past time to support them.
Moreover, women entrepreneurs are changing the way businesses operate, focusing on creating a positive impact on society and the environment. They are more likely to start businesses aimed at helping their community, particularly through education, healthcare, or nonprofits. Women entrepreneurs are also leading a movement towards purpose-driven businesses, focused on sustainability, social impact, and environmental responsibility.
Work-life balance for working moms and the need for change
The pandemic has brought to light the urgent need for more policies that support working mothers and female mom entrepreneurs. One of the most pressing issues for working mothers is work-life balance. Mothers, especially those who are entrepreneurs, have to balance their work with their caregiving responsibilities. This can be challenging and exhausting, and many mothers struggle to find a balance that works for them.
According to a report by the National Women’s Business Council, mothers who are entrepreneurs are more likely to report struggling with work-life balance than fathers who are entrepreneurs. This is not surprising, given that mothers are still the primary caregivers in most households, and are therefore responsible for the majority of caregiving tasks, such as cooking, cleaning, and childcare.
Female parents continue to struggle more than male parents.
To achieve a better work-life balance, mothers need support from their employers, their families, and the government. Employers can offer more flexible work arrangements, such as telecommuting, part-time work, or job sharing, to help mothers manage their work and caregiving responsibilities. Families can share caregiving tasks more equally so that mothers have more time to focus on their work. The government can provide policies and programs that support working mothers, such as paid family leave, affordable childcare, and tax credits for working families.
Mothers also need to take care of themselves and prioritize self-care. Self-care is not selfish, but rather essential for mothers to maintain their physical, mental, and emotional health. Mothers can practice self-care by taking breaks, delegating tasks, and seeking support from their communities and networks.
The impact of mothers in the economy
The impact of mothers on the economy cannot be overstated. Mothers are a vital part of the workforce, and their contributions are essential to the success of many businesses and industries. In fact, research has shown that businesses with a higher percentage of women in leadership positions tend to perform better than those with fewer women in leadership roles. This is because women bring unique skills, perspectives, and experiences to the table, and are more likely to prioritize collaboration, empathy, and innovation.
Mothers also play a critical role in the economy as consumers. Mothers make most of the household purchasing decisions, and their preferences and values have a significant impact on the products and services that are offered by businesses. Companies that understand and cater to the needs and desires of mothers are more likely to succeed in the marketplace.
Overall, Mother's Day is a time to celebrate and honor the contributions of mothers to our society, our economy, and our families. It is also a time to reflect on the challenges that mothers face, and to renew our commitment to supporting and empowering them. By creating policies and programs that support working mothers and female mom entrepreneurs, we can help them achieve a better work-life balance, and unlock their full potential as leaders and innovators.
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