Abstract

Women entrepreneurs have a different set of human and social capital, as well preference of industry and size (Brush, 1992). Angel investors will make their own judgment of matching based on their assumption of gender role in business and of the business characteristics represented by entrepreneurs. Thus, women are more likely to fall out in the initial screening stage for a mismatch from investors’ inherent assumptions and preference of gender roles. With the evaluation of a more complete “package” of overall impression, presenting format, and industry context, investors might anticipate that women entrepreneurs would be equipped with better social skills. Thus, strong social, communication and soft skills during the presentation are needed to advance women entrepreneurs through the pitch stage. Business angels base their assessment partly on intuitions developed over time (Mason and Harrison, 2000, 2003). Though women entrepreneurs are likely to experience difficulties being seen through male-dominated “legitimate” norms of successful entrepreneurs, they could target at aligning the distinctive entrepreneurial identity to investor expectations to moderate the effect of matching and social skills on their chance to be selected for funding.

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