Women made up 42% of small-business owners in 2019, up from just 4.6% in 1972, adding credence to the catchphrase “You’ve come a long way baby!” The increase in women-owned businesses is true for franchises as well. According to Franchise Business Review, there’s been a 24% increase in women-owned franchise businesses over the last decade.
Women are flocking to business ownership for a number of reasons, but a big motivator is “being their own boss.” While the demands of running a business are high, the flexibility and control that come with being the boss can provide just enough room to accommodate the dynamic needs of a family while maintaining a healthy work-life balance. Experts also point to a rise in C-suite and upper-level management positions held by women that build the confidence and business acumen required in running a company.
The fact remains that the majority of child-rearing responsibilities fall to women and women still do more hours of household work a day than men across all age groups. Factor in the pay gap where women still only make approximately 80 cents to the dollar compared to their male counterparts, and it's no wonder why they’re leaving jobs to own their own business where the earning potential is unlimited.
The top four industries for women-owned businesses are: health, beauty, and fitness services; food and restaurant; retail; and business services. Franchise models in particular provide a level of support that other types of businesses don’t, which can allow women to hit the ground running — and focus on growth and revenue. The low start-up costs for insurance franchises make this business accessible to a broad range of individuals, including women who often lag behind men in savings (remember that gender pay gap we mentioned?).
The accessible start-up cost of a We Insure franchise, along with the strong back-end support, make it a great fit for women. Currently, We Insure boasts 59 women-owned franchises, with more on the way. Insurance always has been and continues to be a hyper-local industry, and women can leverage their community ties to their advantage when promoting their services. Insurance in particular is a relationship business, and many women excel at nurturing and developing these types of relationships.
Kendall Bonner is a prominent business owner, former attorney and RE/MAX Broker.
She owns We Insure Across Florida, RE/MAX Capital Realty and a Motto Mortgage franchise in Tampa Bay alongside her husband William Bonner. Reflecting on her journey as a woman entrepreneur, Bonner says, “My mom was a business owner who used her wisdom and experience to guide others. It’s my goal to honor her legacy by continuing her mission to empower others, especially women. I have always believed ‘each one reach for one.’ And as I move up the ladder, my goal is to bring others along with me.”