In Asia, there is a lot to be proud of such as Prime Minister Shinzo Abe’s ‘Abenomics’ growth strategy in Japan which has a goal of having women in 30% of leadership positions by 2020.

And in Malaysia, Prime Minister Najib Razak launched the 30% Club to help achieve the country's target of tripling the percentage of women on companies’ boards to 30% this year.

But there is some way to go, as Hays' Global Gender Diversity Report 2016 shows.

Where three in five women in Asia (62%) aspire to reach a top leadership position in their career, 39% feel they don't have the opportunity to communicate this ambition and sufficiently promote themselves in their current roles.

Women respondents in Malaysia demonstrated the highest ambition to reach MD/CEO level globally in order to feel successful in their careers (28%).

Colombia (22%), UAE (18%) and Japan (17%) also had high percentages of female respondents stating success meant reaching the MD/CEO level, while Germany (7%), the US (7%), and Belgium (5%) had some of the lowest.

Hays report pg 4


Can women self-promote at the workplace?

Less than half (47%) of women globally felt they have the opportunity to self-promote and communicate their ambitions in the workplace, compared to 53% of men - implying this as an area regarded as difficult for both men and women globally.

In Malaysia, 42% of women felt they could promote their achievements in the office, in a list led by Brazil (66%), Poland (65%), and Colombia 65%) - whereas Singapore pegged at just 36%.

Interestingly, the perceived ability to self-promote differed by sectors, where women in professional services felt most comfortable doing so (56%), while those in the public or not-for-profit sectors admitted difficulty in promoting their achievements.

Hays report pg 6


Which gender diversity polices are most popular?

Employees working in companies that have policies for gender diversity have more positive perceptions in three areas - self-promotion of achievements, equal pay among genders, and career opportunities.

Flexible working practices (33%) and education across the organisation to change workplace culture (23%) were nominated as the most effective gender diversity policies to have in place.

Gaining backing from the board around gender diversity issues (21%) and positive action for women applying for management roles or above (21%) were also regarded as effective.

Hays report pg15


Lead image: Shutterstock

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