Here comes the second part of the Data Visualization series! In this post we introduce the TOP3 Professional Support Measures for Restarting Businesses, as well as the Actions Taken in Enterprise to Mitigate Challenges After the Pandemic.

Communicating about research results is a key part of all major projects, therefore RE-FEM as well. Data visualization helps to tell stories by presenting complex information in a form easier to understand, focusing on the patterns and outliers. A good visualization tells a story, removing the noise from data and highlighting useful information!

You can read the first post, Data Visualization of the Research Results here!

You can read the survey results in the Research Report here!


1. The TOP3 Professional Support Measures for Restarting Business, by Country

In our survey completed by 608 respondents (May-June, 2023) we asked what kind of professional support measures or actions the women entrepreneurs take for restarting businesses after the pandemic. Altogether 44% of respondents did not use any professional support: with 11% stating they would have needed such form of support, 22% saying they did not need it, and 11% were not even aware of any kind of professional support opportunities. The most used professional support was individual learning through webinars or online skill developments (26% of all respondents), but 20% also marked joining formal or informal communities of (women) entrepreneurs and similarly 20% marked training related to entrepreneurial skills and knowledge as support measures. Awareness of available professional support measures was lowest in Bulgaria, Spain and Hungary, where nearly a quarter of the respondents indicated they were unaware of such support.

Respondents participated in online learning in the highest percentage in Finland (35%), for all other countries, this form of support was used by 20-30%, except for Bulgaria, where only 10% used webinars and online courses as professional support. Joining formal or informal communities as a professional support measure was highest in Romania (42%), it was between 15-20% in Slovakia, Hungary, Serbia and Finland, while only 9% and 7% used this form of support in Spain and Bulgaria. Training related to entrepreneurial skills was indicated in the highest ratio in Romania (28%), Bulgaria (23%) and Finland (24%), while it was least used as a support measure in Hungary (9%).


While less than 20% indicated the use of other professional support measures overall, there are some differences when looking at the results by country: more than 20% of respondents used business development services in Spain, Slovakia and Finland (it was least mentioned in Hungary and Romania – 6% and 8%). Free mentoring and coaching were used by more than 20% in Serbia and Finland, while paid mentoring was also used by 10-15% of respondents in Spain, Serbia and Finland.


2. Actions Taken in Enterprise to Mitigate Challenges After the Pandemic

We also asked respondents about the actions they took to mitigate the effects of the pandemic and the challenges they have been facing in the last 1-1.5 years. Among the long list of actions, the survey respondents could choose, the three most used measures were increasing prices  (43.9%), introducing new (or modified) activities in the company (36.1%) and expanding to a new target group (29.5%). While the use of support measures among the respondents was not universal, the overwhelming majority took actions in their business to mitigate challenges with only 6% of all respondents indicating that they have not taken any such actions.

In addition, more than 20% of respondents also indicated the introduction of a new marketing strategy (25.8%), increase in the number of clients (24.3%), partnering with other entrepreneurs (23.3%), a stronger focus on online activities (21%) and staff trainings/ skill development (20.1%) among the measures taken.

It can be said that expansion was a widely used strategy across countries (i.e., new activities and expansion to new target groups). The strategy of introducing new target groups was the least common in Spain (only 14%), where the focus was on new or modified activities and online activities.