Mending the Gender Gap
Companies looking to globalize their businesses have to consider gender diversity in their senior management or board. To capture and retain females in leadership, mobility opportunities have to be offered to them or their career progression would be hindered. To overcome the gender gap in mobility, here are some strategies companies may deploy
Companies looking to globalize their businesses have to consider gender diversity in their senior management or board. To capture and retain females in leadership, mobility opportunities have to be offered to them or their career progression would be hindered. To overcome the gender gap in mobility, here are some strategies companies may deploy:
“Start early, start small” – Identifying high performing female professionals early in their careers
A PwC study, titled “Developing Female Leaders”, revealed that a substantial number of women have cited interest in having international exposure in the first six years of their careers. Women are also more likely to take up assignments earlier in their career than men, with the balance changing at around age 40.
To increase female participation in mobility, companies may consider identifying high performing women at junior levels, and send them for short term assignments to allow them to experience a small taste of what it is like working overseas. This could better prepare the employee for a longer term secondment, which would be crucial for the later parts of her career. Moreover, having international exposure early on in one’s career enhances their employability, and sets them apart in an increasingly competitive labour market.
Increasing awareness among leaders on unintended gender bias, and formalising recruitment procedures
As mentioned in our previous article, unconscious gender bias due to assumptions about female expats result in them being sidelined for international assignments. To overcome this, companies can develop processes and/or training to ensure gender neutrality and objectivity when selecting international assignees.
For instance, Telstra is setting in place a new centralized talent database containing data on each employee, including skills, location, experience, and academic background, and more importantly, their interest in international assignments. This approach would allow managers to more objectively select those who are most inclined for a certain overseas posting...Read more
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