Thursday, 10 March 2011

“Handbags and briefcases”

Just thought I would give you an insight into why it can be worth considering my Corporate Image Services to give you as much credibility and confidence that you can muster! I have personally questioned why money seems unfairly biased towards promoting women in business and the following article has opened my eyes!

By: Carleen Kelemen, Director, Convergence Partnership Office
 Barriers to top-level promotion  “The BBC recently reported research for the Institute of Leadership and Management that showed nearly three-quarters of women say that they still face barriers to top-level promotion in the UK, with women supporting positive action to tackle this issue. Sheelagh Whittaker, non-executive director of Standard Life summed up this view nicely on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, “I am a big supporter of quotas. I believe that we will only have true equality when we have as many incompetent women in positions of power as incompetent men.”

Should women receive special treatment? “So should women receive special treatment when celebrating business achievement, receiving career advice or business support? Doesn't equal opportunity now mean that 'one size fits all'? Why should there be single gender groupings and special business support for women? The answer does not lie in the definition of a single gender but in the evidence which highlights an underperforming, sometimes disadvantaged, often undervalued group in our society and the potential contribution that they can make to our economy.

 “Does it matter? Well wiping out 52 percent of your potential talent in the population does not bode well in a competitive global society whichever way you look at it!

Under-represented in top business roles “12 per cent of directors on the FTSE 100 are women. Yet 52 per cent of the population are women and last year 57% of first class degrees were gained by women. A recent study projects that it will take 73 years before there are an equal number of women across the FTSE 100 boardrooms.

Extra barriers exist locally “In Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly extra barriers exist – peripherality, social isolation and a high proportion of low wage industries which, research shows, women are more likely to gravitate towards rather than higher paid professions such as engineering.

Convergence initiatives to support women  “Because of this initiatives have been set up including Empowering Smart Women, Outset Cornwall and Enterprising Women – which receive European Social Fund or European Regional Development Fund Convergence investment.

Equality of opportunity “I have long championed women aspiring to start up or in business and those who wish to progress into employment or in their chosen careers. It is not a biased cause because of common gender. It is about believing that any person, regardless of gender, origin, sexual orientation or ethnicity is able to choose and work towards their personal goals and ambitions.

 "Vive la difference! The best talent is not predicated by gender (or origin, or sexual orientation or ethnicity) and should never be stifled by it!"
Carleen and I putting the worlds to right at a CommStat meeting....we were listening to Nigel Hudson's opinions as well!!!

Photo by Paul Richards

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