The lack of representation for New Zealand women at the head of local small and medium-sized businesses has seen the launch of a new campaign by software company MYOB.

New Zealand is currently ranked best in the world in terms of the ease of doing business and starting a business, according to the World Bank Doing Business report, and yet only 37% of local SMEs are run by women according to the MYOB Business Monitor 2019.

MYOB NZ Country Manager Ingrid Cronin-Knight says New Zealand can do better in terms of representation for women in business.

“Aotearoa has one of the highest rates of women entrepreneurs in the world. But we believe we can go further and achieve equal representation for women in leadership in the SME sector,” says Ingrid Cronin-Knight.

“For a number of years, we’ve been looking closely at the issue of representation for women in business, and in particular the barriers stopping them from participating fully in the entrepreneurial sector.”

“It’s an issue where there is not one single answer, but a key theme we keep coming back to is whether or not women are aware of and can access the support available to help them.”

In response Ms Cronin-Knight says MYOB has embarked on a new programme designed to provide support and offer a range of resources, as well as access to seasoned advice for women starting a business or in the early stages of development.

“We’ve started in a fairly unique way, by talking to women who have been successful in their chosen field to share authentic, actionable advice for local women starting out on their business journey.”

“We wanted to capture the insights local business leaders have and share them in an engaging and inspiring way.”

“We were also particularly pleased to be able to draw on MYOB’s ongoing partnership with the Silver Ferns to draw on the experiences of women who have been successful in their careers – both on and off the court, who were able to share some very relevant insights for women entrepreneurs.”

Ms Cronin-Knight says the benefits of higher participation for women in business will not just strengthen and diversify the economy but will also offer more opportunities for local communities.

“It’s been regularly shown that women in business tend to create more benefits for their community, whether directly through the development of a social enterprise or by giving back in a range of other ways.”

“Ultimately, as we’ve seen in sport in this country, if we can find ways to support more success for women in business, everybody wins and the market grows. That’s why we want to focus attention on the issue and do our part to provide more opportunities for women entrepreneurs to succeed.”

The MYOB Stand Tall, Leap High resource centre is available at myob.com/gameon, offering everything from conversations between successful Kiwi female entrepreneurs and our World Champion Silver Ferns, through to a range of resources that can make a difference to your business now.