If the women of 1916 were around today, what would they think of us? This woman (pictured left) became the first postwoman in New York exactly 100 years ago. Closer to home, the Irish revolutionaries of that momentous year would surely have celebrated her achievement.
Fast forward to 2016. Would those pioneers find reasons to be cheerful? Yes – and no. Think that’s too cynical? Well, as suggested by Kimberly Weisul of Inc.com, try this experiment: “Name five iconic entrepreneurs.”
Could the next Steve Jobs be a woman?
Actually, she adds, don’t bother because every year Inc ranks the top businesses and entrepreneurs and here are some of the answers: Steve Jobs, Elon Musk, Richard Branson, Mark Cuban and Bill Gates. Mark Zuckerberg and Tony Hsieh make the list sometimes too.
Are you spotting a trend yet? So why do men continue do top the rankings?
Bestselling author and entrepreneur Andrew Griffiths isn’t the only one to say that women actually make better entrepreneurs than men.
Why women make better entrepreneurs than men
Here are three reasons why women are better in business than men, according to Griffiths.
- Women are better negotiators.
- Women are more emotionally intelligent about the human side of business.
- Women are better at getting to the point.
So what is holding women back?
If you need a reminder of how few women are at C-Suite level, consider these stats:
- Women hold 4.4 percent of CEO positions at S&P 500 companies.
- Women manage less than 2 per cent of mutual fund assets.
- And, according to the Social & Capital Partnership, “nearly two thirds of the top 71 Silicon Valley venture capital funds have no senior female investment professionals”.
Depressing? Well, yes – and no.
Stop believing the lies
CEO and founder of digital health start-up Vida, Stephanie Tilenius says it’s time women stopped believing the lies.
# Lie 1 To prove myself, I must do this all on my own.
You may succeed on your own, says Tilenius, but you’ll do much better if you build a mentor network.
#Lie 2 Tech is a meritocracy and my idea will prevail.
Face facts, says Tilenius. Sometimes times will be tough and your work/life balance will be out of kilter. You might even feel like a failure, but keep going.
#Lie 3 Having a family will make me too ‘soft’ to compete.
“Absolutely not! Being a mom makes you a better executive,” says Tilenius.
And let’s dare to believe it: the next Steve Jobs is going to be a woman. And maybe it could even happen by 2017.