Women are behind just 15 per cent of all start-ups in Germany, according to the “Deutsche Startup Monitor 2018”, which analysed 1,550 start-ups and found a rise in the number of female entrepreneurs over the period 2013 to 2018. This figure is far too low, according to Jasmina Crcic and her colleagues at the Career Centre of the University of Hamburg, and has prompted the first “BarCamp-FrauenGründen” (BarCamp-BusinessWomen) on September 25, 2019.
Open to all potential women entrepreneuers
The Career Centre is charting a new course with the BarCamp format. “We deliberately opted for the freer form rather than a classical conference,” Crcic, 33, said. The format allows the delegates to shape the content and proceedings themselves. “This provides an inspirational framework for women who want to engage with the theme of setting up a company.” There are no lectures here, rather space is created for stimulus and for outlandish ideas. The Career Centre team ensures the necessary good humour and relaxed atmosphere.
Tips and inspiration
Cric pointed out: “Despite the open structure, we have loosely sketched out our BarCamp’s eight different sessions – simply to ensure that the most important content is brought across.” This includes converting an idea into a product, successful networking and creativity techniques for innovative thinking, alongside financing and drafting a business plan. None of the themes can be dealt with exhaustively during a BarCamp “and perhaps at the end of the day the women will have more questions than beforehand. But if they take on board impulses and stimuli that they can pursue later, then we have attained our goal.”
Entrepreneur, slowpreneur or mompreneur
The event kicks off at 9 am with a welcoming round including an opportunity to network, before the first keynote by Eva Malawska. Her start-up “Kleine Prints” has found a gap in the market with its photo books for children. Crcic regards Malawska as an ideal role model who will report back on the daily grind involved in setting up a business and work-life balance on the basis of her hands-on experience. “Eva Malawska is good example of a ‘mompreneur’ – a mother who is a successful businesswoman. And she is also a ‘slowpreneur’, as she has set up her company using her own capital, with the result that no one pressures her with questions about the pace of growth.
Tips and help setting up a business
The BarCamp target group consists of students and graduates who have ideas on setting up their own business, as well as established businesswomen who would like to contribute their experiences. “The more diverse, the better,” Crcic believes, as the broader the mix, the more versatile the input. For those unable to make it on September 25: Tips and assistance with setting up a business are provided by the Chamber of Commerce’s Gründerservice, the Hamburg Startup Monitor, the Female Founders, the subsidy programme Innovationsstarter Hamburg and the Gründerinnenportal of the German Ministry of Economic Affairs, which includes the “FRAUEN unternehmen” initiative. The German Gründerwoche takes place from November 18-24, 2019.