Business professors Kip Kiefer, Mark Heileman, and Timothy Pett recently published a study in Small Business Economics providing novel insights into gender differences in small business outcomes.
Kiefer, Heileman, and Pett analyze the first publicly available microdata from the 2007 U.S. Census Bureau’s Survey of Business Owners, in a replication and extension study of Robert Fairlie and Alicia Robb’s breakthrough analysis of the 1992 data, to explore differences in female- versus male-led firms’ business performances over a 15-year period. Findings indicate that gender differences persist and that female-led businesses continue to trail male-led businesses in survival rates, profits, employment (i.e., firm size), longevity, and sales.
Their findings also reveal that although female-led businesses continue to trail male-led businesses in some performance areas, both female- and male-led businesses are improving in most of the categories. In some cases, performance improvements by female-led businesses are outpacing their male-led counterparts.