A recent survey conducted by Travelers reveals that women entrepreneurs have a positive attitude when it comes to the future of business.
Earlier this month, the National Association of Women Business Owners (NAWBO) Conference took place in Miami, Florida. The women entrepreneurs attending were very strongly positive concerning business prospects over the next year. In fact, about 63 percent of the women attendees who were surveyed by Travelers said they are confident about their industry’s business environment. Another 33 percent indicated that they were somewhat confident and only about 5 percent responded that they were either not very confident or simply not confident.
Robyn Hahn Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) for Travelers business insurance told FoxBusiness that she was not at all surprised by the optimism expressed by female business owners. “Generally, that group is very dynamic, full of energy, and has a positive outlook overall,” she said.
Female business owners are also at a point where they are more than willing to expand their businesses and invest in their businesses. Over the next year, according to more than half of the female business owners surveyed, they are very likely—or are somewhat likely—to buy or rent new space or make improvements to their existing space. What’s more, most of the women business owners surveyed said that they are in a position to (very or somewhat likely, according to the survey) hire more employees.
Entrepreneurs are not yet fully confident when it comes to disasters and are still feeling the sting of last year’s historic super storm—Sandy. In fact, more than half of the women business owners surveyed admitted that they either do not have, or are not sure if they have, a business continuity or disaster recovery plan in place. Not quite half—only about 39 percent—expressed confidence in their insurance protection against cyber attacks; about the same amount said that they do not have great confidence about their protection, in general.
The findings, says Hahn, are similar to what Travelers saw in 2011. “One of the things we’re doing is trying to spearhead education,” says Hahn.
According to Hahn, women entrepreneurs’ lack of cyber protection motivation does not match their desire to become better educated concerning risks their businesses face. Today, says Hahn, women business owners are seeking to improve their understanding of their businesses vulnerability in the face of increased technology, specifically when it comes to the use of social media. “They’re engaging in social media usage, which starts to present challenges about how much access and exposure you’re giving employees to act on [their] behalf,” says Hahn.
The Travelers Institute is the public policy division of The Travelers Companies, Inc. and is involved in discussion and review of public policy topics important to the insurance marketplace and the financial services industry.
NAWBO, founded in 1975, represents America’s more than 10 million women-owned businesses, considered the fastest growing segment of the country’s economy. NAWBO has some 7,000 members and 70 chapters, nationwide.
Karol, Gabrielle. “Are Female Entrepreneurs More Optimistic?“Fox Business News. October 28, 2013.