Although older women have traditionally lagged behind older men in business creation, there are signs that increasing numbers of women in midlife and beyond are deciding, for a multitude of reasons, to give it a go.
“We’re seeing a lot of women who are starting up businesses in their mid-40s to early-50s,” says Lynne Cadenhead, chairman of Women’s Enterprise Scotland. “It is a genuine trend.”
Elsewhere the report, which was written by Isabella Moore, a former chair of the Women’s Enterprise Panel, noted: “Setting up in business is an opportunity for many older women to develop a long-held ambition or fulfil a need for recognition and status.”
Increasing life expectancy may also come into play. Many of today’s 50-somethings have decades of good health ahead of them and, as Moore’s report says, “Good physical and mental health is an important factor for women thinking of setting up their own business, who consider it a prerequisite for such entrepreneurial activity.”
Greater life expectancy also means women are often in midlife or older before they lose their parents. Inheriting money at this age could provide not only the impetus but the means to put their long-held dreams of entrepreneurship into action.