Are women really making progress in business?
The progress of women in the business world is an age old topic of debate but one which remains relevant even as the proportion of women in the workplace and specifically in executive roles rises.
An update on the latest statistics
A report published a few years ago recommended that FTSE 100 companies should aim for a minimum of 25% female representation on their boards by 2015. The latest figures show that women now hold 17.3% of board positions, so the percentage is gradually increasing, as women make their mark in the business world.
The good news is that companies within South Africa are holding their own against the FTSE companies, with similarly increasing statistics. According to the 2012 Women in Leadership census conducted by the Business Women’s Association, whilst making up 52%of the population in SA, women hold 17.1 % of directorship positions, 21.4% of executive management positions, and only 5.5% and 3.6% of chairpersons and CEO roles respectively.
There is clearly still a long way to go to achieve a truly representative business leadership demographic , and there is no doubt that women need to work at overcoming stereotypes in the work place – whilst also balancing partners’ career needs, children and family obligations with the achievement of their own career goals.