Less than half of the women surveyed in Malaysia feel that they are adequately represented in leadership positions, according to the latest whitepaper titled “Empowering Women In The Workplace” from specialist professional recruitment firm Robert Walters.
In comparison, 49% of male respondents in Malaysia also state that they think women have sufficient standing in business leading roles.
Thirty-nine percent of the respondents in Malaysia agreed that women made up more than 20% of leadership positions in their organizations.
However, 55% believed that there are strong female leaders within their organizations that they can look up to as role models.
Further advocating the need for gender diversity in the workplace, a majority (66%) of women in Malaysia cited the presence of a mentor or sponsor at the senior management level as the most helpful driver in empowering them to develop their careers.
“Inclusiveness in any workplace is much needed to create a dynamic atmosphere conducive for talent development and engagement,” says Sally Raj, Managing Director of Robert Walters Malaysia.
Fresh ideas are constantly required to meet market demands that are constantly evolving, help with problem solving and strategic planning.
To realize the full potential of an organization, business leaders have to first recognize the benefits of a diverse management team.
The survey also highlights that 48% of females in Malaysia do not think their current employer has clear and enforced policies on gender diversity, equality and inclusion.
In addition, 51% of women surveyed feel that their organization is lacking in fair and equal representation of female business leaders.
When asked to name the top three reasons why women are under-represented, 29% of all respondents in Malaysia cited family pressures or commitments outside of work.
Additionally, 27% attributed it to a workplace culture that does not actively foster diversity, inclusion and equality, and 24% believed it is due to a preference by management to promote men over women.