Despite the gloomy economic conditions, one in five women business owners (22%), say they plan to take on more staff in the next 12 months. Of those, 8% intend to hire one new employee, another 8% intend to hire two to five employees and 6% intend to hire more than six employees within the next 12 months.
With an estimated 620,000 majority women owned small business in the UK this would create more than 360,000 new jobs over the next 12 months, so many are urged to follow the lead, set by one of the UK’s leading female entrepreneur Ultimo founder, Michelle Mone.
The Federation of Small Business says that if we had the same level of female entrepreneurship as the US, there would be an extra 600,000 women-owned businesses here, adding £42 billion to the UK economy. But while almost half of women in the UK say they would like to run their own business, only about 8% actually do. It is clear we need to do more to encourage these business savvy women and give the British economy a much needed helping hand.
The survey, by software company Intuit, also revealed a strong entrepreneurial appetite from women who are not yet running their own business. Almost half (49%) of all women surveyed were interested in setting up a business in the future, and 23% of prospective female business owners are planning to launch their new venture in the next year.
The top motivations for women to set up a business were flexible working hours (57%), being their own boss (48%) and working from home (45%). Looking ahead, 47% of female entrepreneurs think there is no ideal time in life to start up your own business – you can start it at anytime as long as you have a great business idea.
Samantha Mayne is an entrepreneur and small business owner in Teddington, who set up TriAdventure, an adventure based events company in 2009. said: “It’s been a lot of hard work, but now the risk has paid off and the business is doing well. We have ambitious plans to grow the company in the next 3 to 5 years, and I hope to hire someone else in the next couple of years. There’s no right or wrong time to start a business, as long as you’ve got a great business idea and the motivation to make it work, I’d say to go for it!”
Pernille Bruun-Jensen, managing director, Intuit UK, who commissioned the survey said: “If there was ever a time to bring the ‘she-economy’ to the UK, now is it. With so many women wanting to be their own boss and fit work around their busy lives, there is an army of would-be entrepreneurs out there who could help drive the UK economic recovery.”