E-learning: Creating a nation of women entrepreneurs

Reports suggest that in the coming five years, women-owned businesses in India could increase by 90 percent, and e-learning platforms will have a huge role to play in guiding women towards educational and financial empowerment.

E-learning: Creating a nation of women entrepreneurs

Wednesday March 09, 2022,

5 min Read

India’s entrepreneurial landscape has been consistently producing a minimum of 1,500 startups every year, over half a decade, making it the world’s third largest startup ecosystem. 

However, 80 percent of businesses within this landscape are owned by men, and India is yet to explore the untapped potential of women entrepreneurs. This untapped potential is cutting short the country’s progress as India’s GDP could be up by 16 percent with more women-owned businesses. 

Digitisation in India has increased by 90 percent over the last eight years, leading the country to become the world’s second-largest edtech market. In the coming five years, women-owned businesses in India could increase by 90 percent, and e-learning platforms will have a huge role to play in guiding women towards educational and financial empowerment. 

Presently, more women are turning to part-time/full-time freelancing and social media influencing, crafting unique solutions in gender-specific markets and venturing into male-dominated industries with high rates of success.

With International Women’s Day being celebrated on March 8, let’s look at how women from varying socio-economic backgrounds can leverage online learning platforms to acquire skills that could help them successfully run a business. 

While these courses are accessible to all genders and backgrounds, creating equal career and business opportunities for women in the country calls for an increased focus on women’s education levels, skills, and economic growth. In doing so, more women can support themselves intellectually, become financially independent, and unlock their entrepreneurial potential.

Women on a Mission

(Representative image)

Starting from scratch

While it’s daunting to start a new venture, bringing a new venture to life can be unlocked by investing in sharpening a few core skill sets that can pave the road to success -- like strategic planning and implementation. Strategic planning and implementation can clear the initial hurdles that come with starting a business. Entrepreneurs who develop business plans increase the business viability by up to 16 percent

Finding a passion, discovering a niche, conducting market research, finding a gap in the market, and crafting a solution are some of the strategic building blocks for setting up a new business.

Learning how to prioritise the steps involved can guide aspiring women CEOs towards developing a tactical work plan. 

Business and content strategist Dana Malhaff shares strategies and tips in her online course on how to set up a foundational plan, analyse market size, growth opportunities, chart out cost to profit ratio, and fix roadblocks along the way.

Finances and funds

Whether the business requires funds, or if it is a solopreneurial journey, understanding financial terms and acquiring a fundamental knowledge of the legalities is crucial in ensuring the business can provide quality services with no constraints.

Industry experts and veterans in the financial sector have shared their expertise in their courses on how to understand financial jargons, manage internal finances, fund opportunities, and elaborate on how to craft a pitch to acquire funds from interested investors

Networking with a vision

Networking can get budding business owners in touch with leaders in the industry and help them build a strong online portfolio. Networking on social media platforms such as LinkedIn can increase the chances of being discovered by potential clients and investors. However, networking is a craft that needs to be honed.

Author and TedX Speaker Francesco Samarelli has online courses on how to self-invest and build meaningful connections, and providing aspiring entrepreneurs with a foundational framework on how to hack networking. Adding to this, there are numerous courses from creators such as Emma Gannon, a bestselling author and an WEBBY-nominated podcast host on creative empowerment and embracing self-promotion, which can provide a networking novice with a roadmap to building creative confidence and creating a presence online.

Brand visibility

More than 50 million small businesses leverage social media platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, and others to connect with their customers and build a brand image. 

Over 3.6 billion people worldwide are active on social media and 55 percent of them find new brands through these platforms. Through dedicated social media marketing, brand building, targeted advertising, analysing metrics such as engagement, demographic, feedback, and more, businesses can become synonymous with their service. 

Charting out marketing strategies, planning associations with external agencies, independent freelancers, or in-house hiring can help maximise the business’ reach. There are also various courses like the one from artist and entrepreneur Cat Coquillette guiding business owners through basics of social media marketing and the various services that they can leverage.

Building a future

While the time required for a business to make profitable and measurable success could vary, learning and employing the strategies above could nudge aspiring women entrepreneurs on the path to transforming the business ecosystem in the country. 

If more women opt for an entrepreneurial career, over 400 million women in India could be financially independent by 2030, if not by starting a business, then by being employed by a woman-owned business. Few online learning platforms are also providing women with opportunities to learn and create an impact across every sector, which is only set to increase in the coming years.

With just the quest to learn, a passion to create unique solutions or by exploring a simple idea, women today can create an empire.

Edited by Megha Reddy

(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)