Our CEO, Declan O’Sullivan was recently invited by Channel NewAsia to take part in a panel discussion at the ‘Channel NewsAsia Luminary Leadership Forum 2015’ . The topic was women in leadership and the challenge they face as they climb the ladder in the corporate world.
Guest speakers were sharing views on this challenge faced by women in different countries including Hong Kong, Singapore, Japan
According to Declan, in the last 20 years there has been a reasonable progression, there are still fewer females in senior management and it s not really about educational participation or labor force participation, but one obvious fact is that the more senior women become, the more challenging it becomes for them.
Professor and President, Arnoud de Meyer, from Singapore Management University pointed that more than 50% of the graduates are women and they have the potential to become leaders. It is more important to find ways to bring women back in the workforce at senior level. Arnoud says it is important to force companies to support women and get them to the top.
Keiko Tashiro, Executive Managing Director at Daiwa Securities Group says childcare in Japan is a major reason contributing to this challenge faced by women, when women go on maternity leave, it is not possible to replace that position with a temp staff.
Quotas and regulations are very important for companies to help women go to the top, as opposed to voluntary targets which often don’t happen.
A shift in cultural mindset and attitude needs to be addressed, which takes education and time, educators, parents, NGOs, government need to play a role to embrace women in the future careers.