Men are more likely to take a risk in order to fulfil their professional ambitions and grow their businesses more quickly, according to research from Women Outside the Box (WOTB), an annual festival celebrating female entrepreneurship. Women, on the other hand, are more risk-averse, according to the study, meaning they are more likely to hold themselves back when it comes to growing a business.
For example, while 34% of men wouldn’t think twice about re-mortgaging their house to fund their business plans, only 17% of women said they would be prepared to do so.
Men were also more willing to invest in taking on the staff they needed to expand quickly, with 68% saying they’d invest in employing people to ensure their business reached its full potential. By contrast, only 25% of female business owners are willing to invest in employing staff to grow their businesses.
“Women are still holding back when it comes to thinking big, taking a chance and really going for it,” says Women Outside the Box founder, Joni Farthing. “Sadly, this is what often keeps women’s businesses small and stops so many intelligent, driven women with great business ideas from achieving the success they are capable of. We need to encourage women to adopt a ‘She Who Dares’ attitude and fulfil their true potential.”
Women perceive themselves may go some way to explaining their behaviour when it comes to taking risks, the research found. While 80% of men said they would consider themselves as ‘serial entrepreneurs’, just 21% of women said the same.
One of the keynote speakers at the WOTB festival, Sue Tugman, says that women are good at taking their time and weighing up the pros and cons of a particular deal or investment, which shouldn’t be undervalued. However, it’s an inevitable part of business life that to get ahead you sometimes have to take a risk and really go for it.
The WOTB festival is taking place on 7th October 2013 in Bristol. For more information, please click here.