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Gender imbalance Featured

10:47am EDT October 23, 2001
Women hire more women. Men hire more men.

It's not just an observation. The National Foundation for Women Business Owners has the statistics to prove it.

The delayed release of some findings from a 1997 survey conducted by the foundation show the gender composition in companies owned by female and male business owners have significant differences. For example:

* The work forces of women-owned businesses are typically 52 percent women and 48 percent men, while men-owned businesses employ 38 percent women and 62 percent men.

* Regardless of the size of the business, women business owners consistently employ a more gender-balanced work force. Women-owned businesses earning less than $250,000 a year employ 53 percent women; those earning more than $1 million employ 51 percent women. By contrast, men-owned businesses earning less than $250,000 a year employ 44 percent women; those earning more than $1 million employ only 35 percent women.

* Both female and male business owners employ women workers at rates that vary by industry. However, male business owners employ women at a rate lower than the national average for most industries, while female business owners, regardless of industry, employ women at a somewhat higher rate than the national average and at a significantly higher rate than male business owners.

These results were taken from a survey conducted in 1997 by the National Foundation for Women Business Owners, with support from IBM, to examine the use of information technology among female and male business owners. While major findings from that survey were published in September of that year, results from one question -- gender equity in the workplace -- were not released by the foundation until September 2000. Source: The National Foundation for Women Business Owners, www.nfwbo.org