Why more women become entrepreneurs
Mairo Musa graduated with a secondclass upper degree in Economics from the university. Though she was the best graduating student from her department that could not earn her a job in the labour market.
After several years of not getting a white collar job, she decided to learn a skill. She learnt make-up artistry.
“I took a three months training at a Make-up school and afterwards, I got a little capital to buy my materials. Today, I am a professional make-up artist. I makeup brides and women for different events. Having been in business for two years now, I have so many clients that I am not able meet their demands,” she said enthusiastically.
Daharatu Ahmed Aliyu is a media practitioner. Because of her passion for communication, she set up Mismas Concept Media.
“If you look at the kind of business I do, which is working as a compeer, more men are into the business. But I took up the challenge; I said I want to be part of it. I want to create jobs for others as well and that is my passion.
”It’s quite challenging but I told myself, that I will have to make it. I set up my business about a year ago. We produce jingles, master ceremonies and we have DJ facilities,” Daharatu said.
These are few stories of how more women are towing the line of entrepreneurship.
At the First Women Entrepreneurs Conference, held in Abuja recently, with the theme ‘Attaining Giant Strides in an Era of Change’, more women were encouraged to become entrepreneurs.
The guest speaker at the conference, Mrs Latifat Balogun, CEO, Hatlab Ice Cream, shared her experience of how she set-up her business from scratch.
“The potential is there for women to trade with especially now that we are shifting dependence on oil. Entrepreneurship is the only way the economy can blossom again,” she said.
Mrs Abiola Olumodeji, vice chairperson of NECA’s Network of Entrepreneurial Women (NNEW), Abuja chapter said by having more women entrepreneurs, they will grow their own businesses and help grow the economy and the GDP as well.
“Women need to own their own business so they can earn money and have something to hold on to. We believe a woman should not be idle. A woman should have a job whether informal or formal. We believe that if you have a skill or a passion, you should build on it. It will generate income for you and will also be a platform to mentor other women,” she said.
The Group Head, Production and Service, Access Bank Plc and speaker at the seminar, Ope WemiJones, said statistics has shown that 65% of women own small businesses all over the world, adding that women thrive at anything they set out to do.
“The bank has a programme called W-initiative for women. It a platform set up to inspire, connect and empower women. So, I invite women to join us at www.wcommunity. com . They can visit any of our branches to make enquiries about this programme and see how they can benefit from it.” she said.
Mrs Omolola Ajani, MD Wood-et-al Limited, said the challenges in the economy have shown that there is need for women to contribute their quota to society no matter how small. “May be if we have more women participating in the economic activities, perhaps things will not be as bad as they are now. We found out that some of them are afraid of expansion and even investment. We want women to be equipped to attain those giant strides in their businesses,” Ajani said.
Hauwa Bello, whose private school, Mumtaz International School is about eight years old, explains why women should own their businesses. “When you do your own business, your mind is at rest because you are doing what you love. It’s your passion. When you do what you love, whether you are paid for it or not, you enjoy it. The joy I feel doing my own thing is the reason why I own a business,” she said.
Abioye Afolasade, manager, Skillz Genius Global Ltd said women are considered to be very prudent in managing funds and so they can translate that to their businesses.
“I encourage women to get skills in any area of their interest. They could generate income from it. Economic empowerment will give them security,” she said.
A female business owner working at desk