Media Release by The Hon Julie Bishop MP

Small business leads the way

Joint Media Release with:

  • The Hon Fran Baily MP, Minister for Small Business and Tourism

The Minister Assisting the Prime Minister for Women’s Issues, the Hon Julie Bishop MP, and the Minister for Small Business and Tourism, the Hon Fran Bailey MP, today launched two new publications which provide important advice to small business owners.

The publications, Women Entrepreneurs: 18 Inspiring Tales of Small Business Success and Better Conditions, Better Business were launched at the Ian Potter Museum of Art at the University of Melbourne.

Women Entrepreneurs: 18 Inspiring Tales of Small Business Success is an Australian Government initiative which highlights the individual efforts of 18 women entrepreneurs who have overcome numerous challenges to run successful businesses.

Stories range from a snake-catcher and biologist to a shoemaker to the stars of Broadway, a rose-petal grower in Victoria, a renowned international chef and an innovative IT expert.

“Women Entrepreneurs provides useful information for all small businesses, including business planning and leadership strategies, staff management guidance, suggestions about accessing government support services, as well as networks and mentoring relationships,” Minister Bishop said.

“Women comprise one-third of small business owners and operators in Australia. Small business employs 3.7 million people – this represents a significant contribution to the Australian economy, as 95 per cent of all businesses are small businesses.”

Minister Bailey, herself a former small business operator, said “reading their stories gave me an insight into the challenges they faced and overcame. Each of the women should be commended for how much they have achieved. This book is a great read for anyone interested in starting a small business”.

“Women Entrepreneurs is a compilation of 18 inspirational stories of success. But there are thousands of other success stories across Australia. There are more than 529,000 female entrepreneurs across our nation, creating thousands of jobs and generating millions of dollars for Australia,” said Minister Bailey.

The Better Conditions, Better Business report, also released today, details family friendly provisions being offered by 1800 small and medium enterprises in Australia.

“This report is a rare insight into small and medium enterprise as a major employer in Australia,” Minister Bishop said.

“Too often small and medium businesses are considered not able to offer flexible conditions to their employees.  This report shines the light on just how far small and medium enterprise go to help employees balance work and family. The report found that 97 per cent of small and medium enterprises provided provisions to their employees to assist them in balancing work and family”

“It doesn’t just benefit employees. Eighty per cent of businesses that offer their employees carer and family friendly provisions reported that it benefits their business in some way, including increased productivity, less absenteeism.  Those that offered the most provisions reported strong levels of performance.

“Better Conditions Better Business clearly shows that what’s good for employees is good for the bottom line”

Free copies of Women Entrepreneurs and Better Conditions Better Business are available in electronic and hardcopy formats from the government website or by calling 1800 050 009.