Small Business Reading Room

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Are Male and Female Entrepreneurs Really That Different?

I recently came across a study commissioned by the Office of Advocacy of the U.S. Small Business Administration which examines linkages between gender and new venture performance.

The paper finds that gender does not affect new venture performance when other factors are controlled for. However, several factors—differing expectations, reasons for starting a business, motivations, opportunities sought and types of businesses—vary between the genders.

Highlights for the curious:

  • The educational backgrounds of male and female entrepreneurs were similar.

  • Women were less likely than men to purchase their business.

  • Men spent slightly more time on their new ventures than women.

  • Female owners were more likely to prefer low risk/return businesses.

  • Male owners were more likely to start a business to make money, had higher expectations for their business, and did more research to identify business opportunities.

If you prefer to do your own reading, you can view the full PDF report here:

Are Male and Female Entrepreneurs Really That Different?

In summary, neither men nor women are not inherently better owners, they just have different business goals.


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