Mentorship Programmes For Indian Women Entrepreneurs


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For women, the lack of strong female role models and women in leadership positions makes it much harder for them to get the guidance, coaching and mentorship they need. This report features a number of mentorship programmes for women entrepreneurs in India.

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Mentorship Programmes For Indian Women Entrepreneurs

  1. 1. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs MENTORSHIP PROGRAMMES FOR INDIAN WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS Page 1
  2. 2. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs India has emerged as the best place for women entrepreneurs to start business with high level of optimism on various factors that are important to judge business growth, according to computer company, Dell. Nearly 25 lakh of India’s small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) are presently managed by women. According to Ela Bhatt of SEWA, women at top levels focus on jobs and not just turnover. Their emphasis is on productive workforce and happier lives rather than on profits. Women, in general, aspire and work for a ‘gentler and caring economy’. Also assets are much safer in the hands of women, as compared to those of men. A survey by Women’s Web found that 57 percent of all women entrepreneurs started their businesses alone, while 35 percent had a co-founder and just eight percent were part of teams that involved more than two co-founders. The majority of women-owned businesses are micro-enterprises or small/mid-sized businesses, with 73 percent reporting a revenue of under INR 10 lakh in the 2011-12 financial year. Women entrepreneurs in the four southern states (Kerala, TN, Karnataka, AP) and Maharashtra account for over 50% of all women-led small-scale industrial units in India. Women in India also prefer Bangalore over the National Capital Region to do business from. Page 2
  3. 3. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs WHAT HOLDS WOMEN BACK IN GROWING THEIR BUSINESS? The top hurdles women entrepreneurs face are :     Arrangement of finances Shortage of raw materials Lack of technical know-how and education Family problems Other issues include :  Need for harmony Women are not encouraged to question the status quo, to think out of the box. Entrepreneurship is disruptive, but women are encouraged to be submissive and to maintain harmony.  Depending on their savings Women across geographies struggle to get funding for their business, and few women entrepreneurs in India seek big-ticket funding from financial institutions. They depend instead on their savings, limiting the potential to scale their businesses. Six out of 10 women entrepreneurs started their business with a capital of under INR 1 lakh, a majority of which used personal funds and savings were used to start the business.  Unwilling to relinquish control They may also be reluctant to get seed funding from outside, where the control moves out from your own hands to being answerable to someone else.  Lack of financial literacy Page 3
  4. 4. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs Lack of financial literacy is a big problem for women entrepreneurs. They need to acquire the ability to read cash flow and P&L (profit and loss) statements, and to learn to speak the language of bankers and investors.  Lack of marketing skills Learning how to create and promote your web presence online, how to advertise online, generate leads, conduct sales conversations, convert visitors – all these tasks need some amount of technical knowledge and expertise. Women entrepreneurs should attend workshops on digital marketing, so that even if they hire someone to do it eventually, the fundamentals are clear to them. Page 4
  5. 5. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs 5 QUALITIES THAT WOMEN NEED TO SUCCEED The unique challenges of women in leadership are not always easy to overcome. Here are the 5 essential factors that women need to succeed as leaders. 1. SELF-ESTEEM This is simple enough to understand. In a world where women are encouraged to follow feminine pursuits and treated as less capable than men, lack of self-esteem is almost an epidemic in women. “Women systematically underestimate their own abilities,” says Facebook COO, Sheryl Sandberg in her TED Talk. “Men attribute their success to themselves while women attribute it to other factors.” Even high-achieving women lack self-esteem in one or more areas of their lives. This belief about oneself causes us to self-sabotage at crucial points in our lives, resulting in lost opportunities, abandoned plans and underachievement. 2. SELF-WORTH Self-worth is the belief that you deserve the best that life has to offer. Many cultures teach women that it is virtuous to be self-sacrificing and give up our own needs to support the needs of our spouses and children. Our lack of self-worth shows up in many ways – in how we abuse our bodies, allow our needs to be undermined and ultimately, in giving up the choice of having the career or business of our dreams. 3. ASSERTIVENESS Page 5
  6. 6. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs A woman’s lack of assertiveness comes from being brought up to be “nice” and “non-argumentative.” We teach our daughters that it is inappropriate to speak their minds or ask for what they need. “Women do not negotiate for themselves in the workforce,” says Facebook COO, Sheryl Sandberg. This makes it hard for women to ask for a raise or a promotion when she starts a career, and makes her reluctant to ask for bigger fees or charge higher prices in her business. 4. MENTORS No one can grow in business or a career without having mentors or role models. The “old boys club” ensures that men get the mentorship they need in and out of the boardroom. For women, however, the lack of strong female role models and women in leadership positions makes it much harder for them to get the guidance, coaching and mentorship they need within the organization. 5. SUPPORT Although women are earning high salaries, many of them are still expected to manage the roles of wife, mother, cook and maid when they get home. Few spouses or families are supportive of their need to work long hours or travel on business. “Women do three times the amount of childcare than men. As a society, we put more pressure on our boys to succeed than our girls,” says Facebook COO, Sheryl Sandberg. The lack of support at home results in many women giving up their aspirations to grow in their careers, forcing them to underachieve. Page 6
  7. 7. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs MENTORING PROGRAMS FOR WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS. BANK OF AMERICA’S GLOBAL AMBASSADORS PROGRAM Bank of America’s Global Ambassadors Program a Vital Voices and Bank of America partnership, is designed to provide mentorship opportunities for emerging women leaders. Fellows join an online learning platform that connects them to a global network of peers. Fellows receive technical trainings designed around their needs on topics including personal leadership, strategic communications and fundraising. Leaders may be engaged in this change through work in a variety of fields including business, non-profit/non-governmental organization, public office/government (elected or appointed), advocacy initiative or communitybased organization. GOLDMAN SACHS 10,000 WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS CERTIFICATE PROGRAMME Covers Bengaluru, Delhi, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune. Goldman Sachs and the ISB provide world class education that helps the participants unleash their full potential, think big, and grow their businesses. Page 7
  8. 8. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs TIE (THE INDUS ENTREPRENEURS) STREE-SHAKTI TiE Stree Shakti (TSS), a movement that aims to connect and enable enterprising women from different socio-economic strata through a series of on-ground focus activities that are driven by TiE’s core philosophy of mentoring, education,inspiration and networking. The key initiatives undertaken to enable women entrepreneur are On-ground focused activities for Women Entrepreneurs across various TiE Chapters viz. ‘Chat over Chai’ – a monthly chat with a Women leader/entrepreneur, ‘Can I Dream Big’ –a series of workshops focused on scaling women enterprise, ‘Business Guidance Camps’ and ‘Group Mentoring Programs’ and ‘Business Guidance Hotline’ to mentor women entrepreneurs. FICCI LADIES ORGANISATION (FLO) FLO is a division of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI). It has chapters in Mumbai, Chennai, Coimbatore, Hydrabad, Jaipur, Guwahati and Kolkata with its head office in Delhi. FLO runs a Business Consultancy Cell in Delhi for potential women and men entrepreneurs to provide consultancy services and extend help in setting up their units and also provide appropriate guidance during the running of their units. FLO also takes and receives delegations abroad to promote bilateral trade, internationalism and fellowship among women. Page 8
  9. 9. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs GOOGLE’S WOMEN ENTREPRENEURS ON THE WEB Women Entrepreneurs on the Web (WeOW) is an initiative aimed at helping women-owned businesses grow their online presence. As part of the program, women entrepreneurs will to learn to build their online presence, collaborate effectively, connect with their customers, promote their organization, and track & optimize their efforts. Pilot programs have been launched in India, Russia and Singapore. CHERIE BLAIR FOUNDATION FOR WOMEN Mentoring Women in Business Programme matches women in developing and emerging countries with male and female mentors around the world. The mentoring in this programme is done online using their specially-designed platform, which allows for great flexibility and cross-border networking and learning. Mentees and mentors meet online at least two hours a month over the course of the year and work one-on-one to achieve key business goals. Participants build their business skills and digital literacy through their trainings. BIZDIVAS Founded and headquartered in Delhi NCR, Biz Divas has a growing presence across the country in cities such as Delhi, Mumbai and Gurgaon. Page 9
  10. 10. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs Biz Divas Mentoring Leadership Program connects talented, emerging women leaders from all over India with members of Biz Divas’ Powerful Leaders for a six month-long mentoring program. Biz Divas provide mentoring, training, support networks & visibility via public forums. MONEYCHAT.IN Pune-based mentoring services for women entrepreneurs. Helps with queries about pricing, business plans, social media, funding, marketing, technology, competition analysis. WECONNECT INTERNATIONAL The WEConnect Indian initiative aims to connect women owned enterprises to corporations under their "Supplier Diversity and Inclusion" programs. WEConnect is working with Ernst & Young on the development of a national certification process. Certification assures corporate buyers they are purchasing from a female supplier. The Initiative leverages strategic relationships with leading India organizations: NASSCOM, CII, SEWA, eMERG and MAWE. Their partners help to promote the concept of inclusive sourcing in India and they work together to encourage women-owned businesses to think big and compete for larger contracts. Page 10
  11. 11. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs ONE MILLION BY ONE MILLION Silicon Valley entrepreneur and strategy consultant Sramana Mitra founded 1M/1M to create a framework for Capitalism 2.0, which she envisions as distributed, democratic capitalism. They offer a case-study-based online educational program, video lectures, lean, capital-efficient methodology guidance, online strategy consulting at public and private roundtables, as well as introductions to customers, channel partners and investors (pre-seed, seed, angel, VC, bank, alternative financing). The public roundtable is a free program accessible from anywhere in the world. The rest of the services are for our paying members only. Nonrefundable $1000 annual membership fee for unlimited usage. They focus on business strategy and execution; capital is optional, and may or may not be appropriate for your particular business. Less than 1% of businesses that seek funding are actually fundable. The core curriculum includes modules on Bootstrapping, Positioning, Validation, Market Sizing, Customer Acquisition, Team Building, and Financing. In addition, there are elective modules that address industry specific topics. In addition, there will be private roundtables on a regular basis where you will get to discuss your strategy with Sramana. ASCENT This Harsh Mariwala social initiative is a platform for entrepreneurs to learn, share and collaborate through each other's experiences and knowledge. Form non-competitive groups of select entrepreneurs, who will "self-guide" themselves with active engagement from ASCENT Initiators and Trainers. Page 11
  12. 12. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs Business should have an annual turnover beyond a minimum threshold of products/manufacturing - Rs. 2.50 crs or above. Services - Rs. 50 lacs or above. Page 12
  13. 13. Mentorship Programmes for Indian Women Entrepreneurs For more such reports and articles on women and entrepreneurship, visit Page 13