Recent studies cited by Franchising.com reveal that since the 1970s, women have been increasingly starting their own businesses. In fact, between 1975 and 2000, 10 percent of all newly established companies were women-owned. Furthermore, the International Franchise Association estimated that in 2005, 25 percent of franchises were operated by women, and an additional 17 percent were operated by partnerships of men and women.
What has caused this increase, making women a particular attractive population of applicants? According to the Web site, female franchisees tend to be extremely adept at organizing operations and identifying priorities, stemming from a concern for detail.
Networking is a huge part of succeeding in business today and is another activity many women have down pat. With strong communication skills, they are able to easily connect and communicate with the franchisor, vendors and customers.
Additional studies have found that women also tend to be more financially conservative than their male counterparts, which can be extremely helpful when just starting out. "This is the kind of business approach and philosophy that is perfect for opening, operating and growing a franchise. Franchisors know it," the Web site writes.
And women franchisees are getting more assistance than ever. The Small Business Association, the Association of Women Business Centers and the International Franchising Association all offer workshops, seminars, mentoring programs and funding opportunities for women interested in and currently operating a franchise.
Franchisees are no long restricted to working in stereotypically feminine industries, either. "Gone are the days when women were simply relegated to working in more feminine-type businesses such as beauty and health-related franchises," Franchising.com explains. Instead, all sectors are open to women, from automotive to food to tax franchises.
Now, franchisors are working with brokers, marketing and advertising staff and their own staff to target and reach female prospects. FranchiseDirect writes, "Franchising offers a tremendous opportunity for ambitious women to start their own business. Just as women's characteristics are suited to franchising, franchising is suited to the needs and demands of women. It can't be doubted, women and franchising make a very successful combination."
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