Ever since my divorce, I’ve been thinking a lot about why women become entrepreneurs. Now it looks like there’s some research related to how women make the decision to become self-employed.
A recent study from Georgia State University takes a look at the motivations of women as entrepreneurs, based on their marital status. While reading the results, I was struck by the similarities between my own motivations for becoming self-employed and the motivations of other women who became entrepreneurs.
Married Women as Entrepreneurs
When I first started as a freelancer, it was to help support my family. According to the research, married women with children under the age of five are often motivated to become self-employed. This is a way for them to continue to work or to provide a little extra income for the family, without the need to have a career outside of the home.
I also found it interesting that the research indicated that married women who live in areas that are more progressive in terms of gender roles were more likely to become entrepreneurs. This was a bit of a departure for me, since at my then-husband and I lived in an area that was rather conservative. According to the study, single women didn’t worry much about the gender role perceptions in their locations.
Today’s technology makes it easier when women become entrepreneurs. Thanks to the Internet and computers and other tools, it’s possible for many women, especially those who have children, to start businesses and earn money from home.
Why Do Single Women Become Entrepreneurs?
Everyone’s motivations, whether they are women or men, are different. Most of us probably have multiple motivations for becoming entrepreneurs or pursuing self-employment. However, this research indicates that single women as a whole have slightly different motivations.
Single women are more likely to become entrepreneurs in order to make money. For married women and married men, according to the study, entrepreneurship is more likely to be about things other than money, like freedom and flexibility. Although I’m sure the money doesn’t hurt.
When women become entrepreneurs as singles, they are also more likely to do so if they are confident and if there is a strong local entrepreneurship community.
Another thing that I have realized since my divorce, is that I have an easier time with my projects than I did before. Many single women have fewer relationship demands than married women. I have my son, of course, but now I don’t have to worry about whether or not my business projects or volunteer projects are cutting into time that I should be spending with my life partner. I think that makes it a little easier for some single women to become entrepreneurs.
In the end, the reasons any of us choose to become entrepreneurs are our own. If you want to become an entrepreneur and pursue self-employment, you need to figure out what makes you tick and create goals around those things.
Are you self-employed? What made you decide to become an entrepreneur?