Why do only half as many women entrepreneurs write and publish their business book as men? Maybe for the same reasons that fewer women than men start their own businesses: they have less confidence in their own abilities, are more risk averse, and have to factor in caring responsibilities. They are also taken less seriously by organisations like banks, funders and publishers, and lack role models, mentors and networks. I'm a serial entrepreneur, publisher and author, and I founded the Business Book Awards (www.businessbookawards.co.uk) in 2017. I brought together an eminent Judging Panel of equal male and female business experts, authors and publishers with a female Head Judge. When the rigorous judging process was completed, every category winner and the overall winner of the first Business Book of the Year was a white male author. Of the 150 books entered, from big and small publishers and self-published authors, one third were written by women. Slightly less than a third of women authors made it through to the shortlist and not one to the line-up of eleven winners. I analysed our list at Rethink Press (www.rethinkpress.com) where, as a hybrid publisher, authors approach us to publish their books – we don’t select them. Our 300+ titles were also one-third female to two-thirds male authors. I carried out a survey and in-depth interviews with 50 female authors of business books and found that women entrepreneurs believe that they are up against the ‘6Cs’ both in business and in publishing: 1. Confidence - women have less confidence than men in their own abilities and suffer from Impostor Syndrome 2. Criticism – women are fearful of judgement and criticism – with justification 3. Caring - women have to factor in caring responsibilities and feel selfish taking time out to write their book 4. Cash – women are more risk averse and worry about investing time and money in book-writing and publishing 5. Credibility - women lack credibility with external organisations like funders and publishers due to unconscious bias 6. The Club - women lack the role models, mentors and networks that men automatically have access to. They don’t know where to get support and are nervous of ‘putting themselves out there’. I've published my findings in my latest book aimed at women in business - A Book of One’s Own – a manifesto for women to share their experience and make a difference. In it I share the hard facts about the unconscious bias that women face in publishing, but also explain why a book can bing so much benefit to you, your business, your family and your gender. Women need to realise it’s not selfish to invest time and money in writing and publishing their book; it’s more selfish to withhold their knowledge and experience that could help their readers and their market, make their business more secure for their colleagues, and make their families proud of them. I’m on a mission to inspire more women entrepreneurs to write their book and claim their authority in their niche. What’s more, becoming a published author is a gender-neutral way to gain credibility, and each individual book authored by a woman adds much needed respect for women in general. I hope ABOO inspires more women to write their business books. For more info, go to ww.abookofonesown.co.uk and for both aspiring and inspiring women authors, come annd join the private Facebook group https://www.facebook.com/groups/ABOOCircles/ If you'd like me to speak at an event or do a masterclass for your group, email me at firstname.lastname@example.orgRead more Read less
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