New research from the Westpac-Melbourne Institute SME Index reveals that women in SMEs are feeling more optimistic and upbeat about current and future business conditions than their male counterparts. Overall, women had a SME Index score of 105.4, 3.6 percentage points higher than that of male businesses.
The Index also found that 77.9 per cent of female SMEs believe connectivity and networking is important in their business (similar to men at 78.2 per cent). Women in SMEs find that increasing their professional network leads to increased existing business, such as through sales and customers. This shows that connections provide a strong opportunity for women in small businesses.
Here are five tips to help women in business reap the rewards of networking:
There is real power in connecting women across all levels and stages of a business cycle. Women need to know they are not alone in their journey. Empowering women to share learnings and experiences, from balancing family and career, to managing cashflow and growing their businesses, is a key step in helping women push for progress in all aspects of their lives.
Felicity Duffy, Head of Women’s Markets, Westpac Group