Mumpreneur – The term killing your career

Posted: Monday March 2 2020

By: Abbie Coleman

You cannot escape the rows of merchandise and the rush on Instagram to use quotes of #GirlBoss #Mumpreneur. They have been with us for the last few years purporting to support the elevation of women in business as leaders, bosses and entrepreneurs. But is this trend one of the biggest setbacks for women in business? And worst of all is it women themselves who are pushing forward this trend?

When I first launched MMB Magazine I was inundated with requests for quotes and some interviews about setting up a business in this field. The exchanges went anything from we are doing an article all around mumpreneurs through to them sneakily adding the unwanted term mumpreneur under my name without my permission. At what point did I stop being an entrepreneur and become a mumpreneur because I certainly didn’t notice?

“Let us stop infantilising women in business and everywhere!”

My issue…. is why do we give this label due to sex or family status and why only to the female sex in most cases? The reason you started your business has nothing to do with who you are in business, so why do we have to mix the two and why do we do it more for women than men?

 

“I take special issue with society’s need to differentiate a boss, from a female boss. It makes the assumption that we need to specify girl so as not to detract from the real boss – a middle-aged man in a suit. The need to qualify our role in this way seeks to make the idea of female leadership sound less radical, more palatable for society – but we shouldn’t need to make the idea of a woman in a high-level position easier to digest. And the worst part is that women are the ones pioneering the term. We’re the ones plastering it on t-shirts and Instagram posts.

We’re the ones leaving ourselves open to degrading comments. There is such a massive disparity between how we talk about ourselves and how we expect to be talked about.” Katy Leeson MD Social Chain

At what point did the world feel that we as women had to be segregated from the actual job titles we hold of boss or entrepreneur and be given a new title? Are we saying we need to distinguish these women and make sure people know they are not a real boss but a girl boss, not an entrepreneur but a mumpreneur, a title that is less or lower in rank? At best it’s insulting at worst it is setting back women in the workplace

Let me show you why! Would you really want your daughter to strive to be:

A girl lawyer, girl surgeon, girl plumber, girl runner.

No, it sounds ridiculous, insulting and patronising and her gender – just like your son’s gender – should have no bearing on her/his career. When did you last see your male business colleague go out and buy himself a #BoyBossmug or use the hashtag #BoyBoss to celebrate his new promotion to Head of Department on LinkedIn?