The young women of today, strong and independent they are

Terms like “mumpreneur” and “lipstick entrepreneur” are stopping young women from starting businesses, MPs say.

In a report the All Party Parliamentary Group for Entrepreneurship said that girls were being put off launching careers as science and tech entrepreneurs because of a perception that women’s businesses belonged in the lifestyle sector.

“The media often portrays women as running ‘lifestyle’ businesses, which have little opportunity for growth. Terms like ‘mumpreneur’ or ‘lipstick entrepreneur’ do little to tackle the stereotype,” its report warns.

There mere use of a word disturbs the shrinking little violets.

20 thoughts on “The young women of today, strong and independent they are”

  1. “Little opportunity for growth”?

    I’m sure Chanel, Dior etc might disagree.

    I’d have thought the lifestyle industry was one showing the most growth, behind IT.

  2. First time i’ve heard either term. Oh well.

    Wasn’t there something recently about the about to be youngest self-made billionaire? Some young lady from the tv? Selling “lifestyle sector” stuff?

  3. Their role model, Elizabeth Holmes, was never described as a “mumpreneur” because, er, she isn’t a mum.

    Her sex, of course, had nothing whatsoever to do with roping in such tortoise-necked, cuntstruck investors as H. Kissinger, R. Murdoch, and others of the Viagra generation, no no no.

  4. WTF would MPs know about starting businesses? Apart from how to make it hard to succeed starting a business. If they had any talent for it, they’d be doing it. Not taking their chances on the greasy political pole climbing.

  5. The Meissen Bison

    BiS is correct. MP’s should be paid less and spend a lot less time at Westminster – the idea that they can interview a selected bunch of people and distill their findings into anything representative or useful is laughable.

  6. With every passing day MPs display their utter irrelevance to an increasing extent. Instead of playing in Westminster pretending to be important, they ought to be forced to get real jobs for half a week

  7. Never mind fucking lipstick you cunts.

    Bring down Treason May –Lord Whore Whore herself–and get on with a NO DEAL Brexit.

  8. ‘its report warns’

    Dr. No: Why have you come here during the day against my strictest orders?

    Prof Dent: I came to warn you!

    Dr. No: Warn ME?

  9. @Chester

    “I’d have thought the lifestyle industry was one showing the most growth, behind IT.”

    I have a feeling you misunderstand but the bit isn’t well written so the misinterpretation may be on my side. A “lifestyle business” doesn’t necessarily mean a business selling cosmetics or diet and fitness advice, just a business that will never scale up but brings in an income sufficient to sustain a lifestyle (so more than a “hobby business” but basically as entrepreneurial as a contractor working through a personal shell company).

    You can have a lifestyle business baking personalised homemade cakes, or preparing specialty jams or chutneys, or doing wedding planning, or home tuition, or making paintings of animals, or giving IT training to the local elderly, or making websites for local small businesses, or a designer of birthday cards, or a photographer specialising in family portraits … But while they might have some of the trappings of business (a website, an office or studio or professional kitchen) they rarely blossom into full-blown SMEs with employees at the coal-face and a separate admin and management team directing it all.

    There seems to be some concern that the self-employment boom has largely been fuelled by people starting lifestyle businesses rather than taking commercial growth seriously. People who launch a start-up with growth in mind have a better chance of creating a company that creates jobs, exports its products and raises productivity.

    But having done pretty well from a “lifestyle business” myself, I’d note a few things in their favour. One is flexibility in hours which may well be an issue for many women – if you really do want to go in to “serious business” then it is going to be life-consuming, whereas most lifestyle businesses let you find a balance between side-business or hobby project up to part or full-time work. Another is the limited start-up costs and the way you can get your hands dirty doing the thing you enjoy – eg you sell cakes because you like baking cakes yourself, not because you fancy the idea of being senior management at a cake factory. In fact if the business ever did grow, most founders are not going to best-placed to take on that kind of role anyway – at some point of growth it is better for most SMEs to bring in professional managers with commercial experience. On top of that, growth-oriented start-ups are high-risk affairs with a decent chance of taking down your capital with them (and for founders in the UK that will often mean their home). Probably not the best idea for financial security if you’re a mum with small kids.

    Lifestyle businesses are not without risk – if you chuck in the day job then find you can’t attract enough clients to pay the rent and feed the kids then that’s a bad move. But you can manage the risk by starting small, as a hobby or side-project, then growing your hours organically through customer referrals or press coverage until you are able to do it full-time if you wish.

  10. Bloke in North Dorset

    A lot of lifestyle businesses set up by women are really just hobbies paid for by their husbands to stop them getting bored.

    I should point out Mrs BiND’s art started like that when I was travelling but now turns over enough to keep the taxman interested, even after deducting all her expenses.

  11. @Bind

    Well done to your wife!

    Indeed it shouldn’t be surprising that on average men and women have different incentives for starting businesses and it may be no bad thing if disproportionately more women opt for hobby/lifestyle businesses than men. It may just reflect people fairly rationally choosing the more appropriate option for their personal situation.

    I wouldn’t look forward to reading a ream of sob stories saying “Husband had a stable job and I was getting bored looking after the kids – then a government scheme to encourage start-ups led me to hardly see my family at all while I slogged a 70-hour week and it only ended when the business collapsed and we lost the house”.

  12. I find looking after the kid is physically hard work, but a relief from work. And I don’t think it’s a case of a change being as good as a rest. It’s just not as pressurised or as stressful. And I do a lot of it. Domesticity is pleasant. The outside world? Not so much.

    I should also add this. My business model, and that of the entire Bar, is a kind of cottage industry which then agglomerates: you get scores of cottage-industry-ers in one Chambers, so it becomes a multi-million pound business. This leads to management and staff responsibilities which, like the cake-baker, we’re ill-equipped for, temperamentally and in terms of workload.

    If I have a point, I suppose it is that “vocational” work, whether baking or advocating or priesting or sawing bones, no matter how good at it you are, is not the same thing as business and man-management acumen.

    But you all probably knew that already.

  13. The Meissen Bison

    M’Lud: If I have a point, I suppose it is that “vocational” work, whether baking or advocating or priesting or sawing bones, no matter how good at it you are, is not the same thing as business and man-management acumen.

    Just so.

    One might quibble about the use of the word “vocational” there but that aside the interesting thing in the sawbones trade is that there are so many managers required here and they do such a poor job because there is no financial incentive for them to do a better one.

  14. imho an example of
    lifestyle businnes it the Nothing Shop

    Those small shops which sell ornaments, candles, jewelry and other overpriced tat. Invariably the tat is handmade by another lifestyle business or is ethnic fair-trade tat.

    I never see any customers in them and they usually close after a few years.

    Landlords and shopfitters like them.

  15. Mr Bison, hence my scare-quoting of “vocational”…

    How do you propose to incentive the sawbones? Aside from Prof neg. I’m probably being unimaginative…

  16. The idea that actual people think that words are stopping women creating and running businesses. In fact there are some words which stop people starting businesses: “tax”, “costs”, etc. But “mumspreneur” isn’t on the list.

  17. The Meissen Bison

    M’Lud – I’d leave the sawbones alone but whittle down their management and incentivise the latter by paying hospitals on the basis of treatments carried out by the former.

    The current system seems to provide a budget that can be disbursed irrespective of performance enhanced by a power to bilk the sick or their visitors with phenomenal car park fees.

  18. Bloke in Costa Rica

    I like cooking and I’m pretty good at it. I’ve had people ask me if I’ve ever thought about opening a restaurant. “No,” I say, “because I like cooking.”

  19. You think they’re sensitive snowflakes, just wait until you see how some people react to being asked to call a transgender woman “she”.

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