Chat with Expert – What are the challenges faced by a woman entrepreneur

Chat with the Expert series was with Shraddha Patil on August 26th.
Being a successful entrepreneur herself right now she is Co-Founder and Chief Mentor at The Mentorpreneurs. The topic of “What are the challenges faced by a woman entrepreneur” The Chat was hosted by Surya Mahopatra

Question: Why did you choose to become an entrepreneur yourself? How did this begin for you?
Shraddha: As my father had his business entrepreneurship was always on my mind, but when my son got a year old I started living my dream.

Question: I am homemaker. Can I be an entrepreneur? I don’t want to be a full time entrepreneur. I need to take care of my family.
Shraddha: There are a lot of opportunities for home makers who can venture out on their own. But entrepreneurship has its own challenges. Plan your journey and set milestones before you start.

Question: I have noticed that it’s very difficult to be a lone woman entrepreneur. A guy must be with you as a co founder or you must have a strong arm. I would like to know if other women too feel so and if yes how to overcome this?
Shraddha: at times I have faced situations where it was difficult to manage and have lost business. But as a woman we must be strong, focused and determined. I am doing business for past 5 years alone.

Question: I am into a venture on reviving and showcasing weavers. I am looking for funding. Need to know which sources to reach out.
Shraddha: there are various funding options. There are also associations who encourage woman entrepreneurship. You can connect with us and we will guide u under mentorpreneurs

Question: As an Women Entrepreneur how do you manage a work – life balance. How do you face this challenge?
Shraddha: its more of integration between work and life. And sometimes its challenging, but we have to decide where our presence is needed most and once decided be there 100{8ead27c4518c0b10559874054ae3fda4d54ed4b9784c4144c679fdb93c45d0af}

Question: How often do you face gender bias issues as a woman entrepreneur? How do you tackle it?
Shraddha: When I started off it was quite frequent, but then I was firm about what I wanted so facing it was not that difficult.

Question: Which is a better? A proprietary Prop firm is good or a pvt ltd. What are the challenges in zero investment start-up?
Shraddha: To start off wit proprietor is always good. If it is service related firm there are no challenges. For a proprietorship firm the only solution I have found is tie up with similar service providers to upscale my services.
Employees and all this should come wen u have cash flow. These challenges would always be there for any firm

Question: What are the points that women need to be prepared for, while planning a start up – apart from work-life balance.

Shraddha: The most important point that I would tell a woman is to be focused on their path. With family limitations we must exactly figure out how much we can do and stick to it. Plan your expansion as well. When I started off in 2011 I was slowly built my core business till 2013, then I started partnering with people and now wen I know my son has slowly started becoming independent I decided to get into new ventures.

Question: I have a niece. Who is 23 years old and she finished her masters recently. She wants to start her own venture. Her parents are dead against it. They want her to take up a job. She is now unsure. What would be your advice to her?
Shraddha: Plan your journey is the key. To be honest my mom is still against my decision. One advice would be for her to be firm in what she wants to do. Entrepreneurial journey is not easy. It needs patience and persistence.

Question: Traditionally Indian women have learnt to adjust and adapt instead of putting their foot down when necessary and saying No. This nature works against them when it comes to the business world. What is your take on this?

Shraddha: Planning the journey is most important for a woman. When we have clarity on what we want we exactly know what we want to leave.

Question: what qualities in women make them good entrepreneurs?

Shraddha: Positive attitude, Inner strength, Perseverance, Strong minded, Loving and caring, Integrity, focused, Cause driven and ability to handle obstacles.

Question: Do men feel more egotistical to work for women? If so, how do we help them do their job?

Shraddha: As a woman entrepreneur I have always tried to understand the qualities behavioral traits of my male counterparts and built my way of working accordingly

Question: Do u think the quality of multitasking in Women entrepreneurs is an asset, and hence they are better leaders?

Shraddha: Multi tasking has its own pros and cons. But when it comes to woman as better leaders there are lot of other factors like sensitivity to employees, understanding situations etc

Thank you very much, Shraddha for the brilliant session. And the group definitely found it useful.