May 12 through May 16, 2014 is National Small Business Week. This very special week celebrating the entrepreneurs who drive our economy has been recognized by the President of the United States each year since 1963. The week provides an opportunity to recognize the sacrifices of those who take the brave steps to start their own business. This year’s National Small Business Week is particularly exciting, though, because new survey results have been released that show that women are performing exceptionally well as small business owners.
Women are Starting their own Businesses
The San Jose Mercury News reports that women are starting small businesses at what it calls a “torrid pace.” An American Express analysis shows that women are starting 1,288 companies each day in the United States. This is a massive jump from the 602 companies that they started each day in 2011-2012. The total number of women-owned businesses in the United States has risen by 68 percent since 1997. The same survey shows that female small business owners are starting businesses that deal predominantly with educational services, administrative services, are involved in arts and recreation, or that handle waste management.
This success for women is not limited by race. The same survey indicates that one out of every three female small business owners is a member of a minority group. While Minority women owned only 930,000 small businesses in America in 1997, they now own 2.9 million small businesses.
Small Business Success is Attributable to Many Factors
The report attributes this success to many factors. Women have an increasing number of role models in the business world, and there are programs to help them start and grow their businesses like those provided by the Office of Women’s Business Ownership. Women seeking business counseling and advice can also turn to a qualified Bay Area business attorney for guidance. Business News Daily reports that in 2012, 7.8 million of the 27 million total small businesses in the United States were owned by women, and 4.5 million of them were owned equally by both men and women.
The Mercury News also cites a survey released by Bank of America that shows that female business owners tend to be more optimistic about the economy and their businesses than their male counterparts. Women surveyed were more likely than men to expect their revenue to rise in the next year, they were more likely to plan on hiring people in the next year, and they were more likely to have plans to expand their companies in the next year.
Business News Daily explains why these numbers are so important to the success of the economy. It cites a report from the California Association for Micro Enterprise Opportunity that found that small businesses with four or fewer employees created 5.5 million jobs between 2004 and 2010. This means that the businesses these women are starting do not just provide a way for them to support themselves and their own families. They also provide jobs for others as well. This is why the women and men who take the step to start a business deserve to be recognized this week.