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International Handbook of Women and Small Business Entrepreneurship

Edited by Sandra L. Fielden and Marilyn J. Davidson

The number of women entering small business ownership has increased significantly across the world in recent years. These women make a crucial contribution to the economic growth and development of local, national and global economies. Yet, despite their increasing numbers, they have received comparatively little attention from the academic community. This comprehensive and coherent book redresses the balance and provides an up-to-date, theoretical review of this important area of study. A distinguished group of international contributors presents the latest work from the USA, the UK, Australia, Canada, India and Singapore, which explores practical initiatives and strategies related to the experiences of women entering small business entrepreneurship.
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Chapter 8: The Impact of Family Support on the Success of Women Business Owners

Nancy Rogers


Nancy Rogers Introduction As greater numbers of women enter the workforce or start their own businesses, the challenge of balancing two major adult roles becomes a critical issue. In fact, many employed women and women business owners identify the stress of balancing work and family and the inter-role conflict that this creates as one of their biggest problems (Harte, 1996; Honig-Haftel and Martin, 1986). In an attempt to address this problem, women are attracted to the potential benefits of entrepreneurship which include perceived increases in flexibility and greater ability to balance the rewards and demands of career and family (Rogers, 1998; Center for Women’s Business Research, 28 February 2001). And, since women’s jobs are characteristically lower in prestige, lower paying, less autonomous and more rigid (Andersen, 2000), owning one’s business becomes an attractive alternative indeed. Unfortunately, inter-role conflict continues to create problems for women business owners and research on how they are affected by this conflict is sparse (Moore and Buttner, 1997; Rogers, 1998). Still, comprehending the impact of inter-role conflict is important because the success of women-owned businesses is of significant importance to the economy. In the US, there are nearly 6.2 million women-owned businesses representing about 36 per cent of all small businesses, employing approximately 9.2 million people. Furthermore, these businesses account for approximately $1.15 trillion in sales in the US and represent the fastest growing business segments in the UK and the US (Center for Women’s Business Research, 4 December...

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