by wowmagazine

Keshu Khadka
Dentist, Miss Supernational Nepal 2022

As a result of living in a society that’s largely patriarchal, what holds women from pursuing their entrepreneurial goals is a lack self-confidence; this is in context to women who are fully capable. The lack of self-confidence and self-belief is deeply rooted and it’s not just personal but it’s societal. They systematically underestimate themselves which prevents them from taking risks, exploring opportunities and hence, scaling their businesses.

The stereotypical gender roles and societal expectations or rather, constraints also play their part. From being involved in the chores more than their partners to being expected to be the caregiver of their families and children, it surely takes up their time and energy; this keeps them from committing to bigger responsibilities and setting long term goals.
There is an absolute lack of representation of women in leading positions and that makes a difference in how women envision themselves in the future or set their ambitions. Furthermore, limited capital and lack of funding also directly limit their access to resources and expansion.

It surely needs a multi-dimensional approach to overcome these barriers and it has to be a combined effort from people of all genders. Men too have to become allies and advocates while addressing these problems; and in order to solve them, they should first be identified.

Palas Joshi
Co-founder and Executive Chairperson, Tavisi

Answering this question has been quite a quest for me – because I would like to wholeheartedly believe that nothing should hold a woman back from scaling her business in today’s times. Yet, I am realising that the truth and reality remain far from this. Women generally tend to take up a myriad of roles in society – from a mother, daughter, daughter-in-law and wife to a professional and homemaker. Being a professional does not provide her with the freedom to give up any of her other roles. Juggling multiple responsibilities and trying to maintain work-life balance make women hesitant and make it difficult for them to scale up their ventures. Subsequently, closely aligning to the point above, a lack of family support also plays a fundamental role in women failing to reach their entrepreneurial potential.

With much of Nepali society still deeply entrenched in patriarchal belief systems, self-doubt is a common trait amongst women. Not asking for what they deserve, fair of failure and questioning themselves are familiar notions that most women deal with which prevents them from scaling their businesses. In addition, unnecessary pressure from societal expectations is a further barrier for women in business in Nepal.

Last but never the least, the lack of women representation in government and in other pertinent positions of power and subsequently, the lack of female friendly policies, hinders the progress, development and potential of women in business, and acts as a deterrent for business scaling and growth.

Dr. Smriti Shrestha
Dermatologist, Hair Transplant and
Anti-aging Expert

There is a lot in the backdrop that hinders women from upscaling their business. I see socioeconomic, cultural and psychosocial influences in major financial decisions women can make. From childhood, both men and women are pitched this narrative of gender stereotypes, men being the provider. Even the book says “Rich Dad, Poor Dad” and not otherwise. This allows men in the household to take bigger financial decisions, while most women have to tiptoe into business with medium to small budget.

Coming to budget, I really don’t see women of our generation getting or claiming their parental property. Banking system also asks for collateral for any business venture. Without asset or capital, smartest of ideas can fizzle out. Another issue is ‘mindset’ as to how high we can soar. Few of us have the opportunity, the capital and the mindset to upscale our venture, even if it’s is a roaring success.

But on a positive note, despite the hurdles, I believe the times are changing. Many women are stepping up and changing this household dynamics. There are women leading their households in all social strata. Our generation has more female entrepreneurs than ever. And this will definitely amplify in the next generation as our daughters get the inspiration and support from their moms, society and the corporate sector.

Shrija Shrestha
Founder and MD, Ambassador Designs

When it comes to women entrepreneurship there has always been tons of things that comes in between from capital to market supply. Women entrepreneurs often face difficulty in securing funding for their businesses, whether it’s from investors, banks or other financial institutions. This can make it challenging for them to scale their operations and reach new markets. Women often have fewer role models and mentors to look up to and learn from, which can limit their exposure to successful business strategies and opportunities. Women often have to balance their business responsibilities with their family and caregiving responsibilities, which can be challenging and limit their ability to focus on scaling their businesses. Women entrepreneurs may face gender bias and discrimination in the business world, which can limit their opportunities for growth and hinder their ability to scale their businesses. Women entrepreneurs may have limited access to networks and connections that can help them grow their businesses, such as industry associations, trade shows, and networking events. This can limit their exposure to new markets and customers.

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