Why More Women Should Take Up Leadership Roles

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In a previous post, i mentioned a study conducted by Billie Jean King Leadership Initiative (BJKLI) and Deloitte LLP, which shows the importance of diversity and inclusion in the work place and why managers should consider this issue as an important aspects in order to remain competitive and be successful. TechCrunch, matters of diversity and inclusion continue to be a hot topic in the Silicon Valley and various Tech industries, where leaders in male dominated industries, are now beginning to see the need to see more women being represented across the industry.

Up until now, women are have been undervalued. And in corporations, it’s no longer a secret that that the majority of employees who are often exposed to discrimination are women. Discrimination in the work place comes in all forms. It’s starts in the hiring process, then to the kind of jobs women have to do, down to the wages. In terms of promotion, climbing the ‘career ladder’ is not easy for women as it is for the men. Women must work a lot harder to get to the top. The situation is even worse for mothers (including single mothers) especially,  are sole bread winners for their families. They face inequality and discrimination based on their family responsibilities. Of course mothers, have other little ‘lives’  and household chores to take care of. But i like to think of it as ‘unpaid work as political economist Marilyn Waring, and a professor of public policy at the Institute of Public Policy at AUT University in Auckland, as Marilyn Waring, a political economist described it which indeed is also important for the economic development.

It is true that women are not only undervalued, they are also under-represented in almost all kinds industries, politics, management levels and leadership roles. Company boards are dominated by males. The list is long, how a lot of business organisations continuously create impediments for the full realization of women’s potential. Women continue to face limitation for their upward mobility in all angles of life. And honestly there is need for change.  A more demonstrative article on the issue of gender imbalance can be found on the Huffington post

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Why do we have very few women taking up leadership roles in organisations? Aren’t they just as qualified as their male collegues? In an article for New York Times which  which Sheryl Sandberg,  the chief operating officer of Facebook and Adam Grant, a professor at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania co-wrote, they explain about common gender stereotypes which are main reasons that women are considered less competent for certain job positions even though women are equally qualified for those positions.

Fact remains that, when companies undervalue women’s work in any form work, they are neglecting labour that sustains lives and putting women in vulnerable positions. Denying women access to certain to certain types of occupations in industries and management positions in the corporations should be a thing of the past. In their article on Discrimination at Work, Adam Grant and Sheryl Sandberg  further emphasise on the  need to speak up and act against ‘imbalances’ in leaderships roles. Infact in their article, i agree with them that  when women are in the top management positions, business organisations are likely to be innovative and profitable. On a separate Ted Talk on “Why we have too few women leaders”, Sheryl Sandberg  passes across a very inspiring message. One of the most powerful messages she talks about, is on the kind of messages individuals need to be telling themselves in order to stay in the work force. And to the women, she encourages them not to understimate their own abilities.

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