New episode of the EBRD podcast available for download
The latest episode of the Pocket Economics podcast looks at the challenges faced by women entrepreneurs and ways of making female-led businesses more successful.
Charlotte Ruhe, Director for Financial Products within the EBRD’s Small Business Initiative and one of the driving forces behind our Women in Business programme, argues that women need support, mentoring and networking opportunities when they start their own business.
“Being an entrepreneur is more than a full-time job; it’s almost a vocation,” she tells Jonathan Charles, EBRD Managing Director, Communications.
She advises women thinking of becoming entrepreneurs to find others who know the business world and can be their mentors, and also to familiarise themselves with the financial opportunities available.
Regarding the pay gap between women and men, she explains that: “there is a question of discrimination, but there is also a question of life breaks that women take. Women raise their children and they are out of the workforce, they miss the promotions, they miss the experience.”
Apart from the practical obstacles, in some countries there is also a prejudice against the very idea of female entrepreneurs, she says.
For example, in some countries women are unable to receive a loan from a bank without their husbands’ “blessing”.