Primarily male-dominated entrepreneurial ground has seen some of the most incredible innovations when women have set their foot into the industry. Today, their entrepreneurial ideas have been evolving various business domains in no time and, their leadership has become an inspiration for many budding female entrepreneurs out there. From being founders of successful start-ups to being heads of global business giants, they have embraced these roles effortlessly, and staked a claim with their pioneering work to build a path for the next generation.

There is no question that women are making large strides across a wide range of Cyprus’ sectors, including financial, IT, medicine, legal, real estate, media, advertising, motoring, hospitality, philanthropic, and social among others. As women continue to secure increasingly high-level leadership positions, their impact within their organisation has not only changed the culture in the workplace but has also redefined the island’s evolving business landscape.

Forward-thinking businesses that are seeking to bridge the gender gap are growing and thriving off the inclusion of women in the corporate space, breaking through the glass ceiling at an incredible rate, taking control of their careers and futures, at the same time contributing to society.

As women continue to break the boundaries in the entrepreneurial arena, it is important to understand what makes them effective and successful business leaders. According to a Dow Jones and Harvard Business review, women are more empathetic, more intuitive, and take a more personal approach when it comes to people in the workplace. As a result, they understand an individual’s strengths, where there are opportunities for improvement, and the challenges they may be facing.

In addition to great leadership skills, communication, willingness to take risks, and a lower tendency toward over-confidence drive progress and continued success. Another report, conducted by Womenable – a social enterprise that works to enable women’s entrepreneurship worldwide – suggests that women control over 80% of all consumer spending, therefore in a better position to make judgements about what other women want from products and services.

Seed-stage venture firm, First Round, analysed 10 years’ worth of its investing data, made up of 300 companies and close to 600 founders and co-founders, to evaluate the characteristics of successful owners. One of the surprising things the firm discovered was that investments in companies with at least one female founder outperformed their investments in companies with all-male founders. In fact, companies with a female founder performed 63% better than companies where founders are all males, in terms of return on investment.

Women executives also improve company performance; the more female executives, the higher the success rate. A longitudinal study conducted by Dow Jones VentureSource found that firms with three to four female executives had higher success rates compared to companies with only one or two female executives. More importantly, start-ups with five or more female executives had the highest success rate at 61%.

Aside from the fact that whether within personal or professional circles, women tend to stand up and support each other, their excellent communication skills allow them to form strong, mutually productive networks.

Statistics from a multitude of studies show that, despite additional barriers which they face, women entrepreneurs are higher performing, more successful, bring greater revenues to their companies, and are wiser decisionmakers than men. As a strong advocate for women in business, Cyprus 4.0 wishes to bring this reality to the forefront of the industry by featuring a select group of women who are the movers and shakers of Cyprus’ business landscape.