As we know, most Asian countries are labeled as more collectivist societies and less individualistic than Western countries like the United States.
This concept may inhibit women’s ability to move up in the business world in Asia, making it a lot more difficult to break the glass ceiling.
I recently came across an interesting article in one of the daily newspapers that stated the very recent progress in Asian Universities for adapted courses designated towards women who want to move up the ladder in the business world.
Most recently the University of Hong Kong added a course specifically for this reason called, the Women’s Directorship Program; the course’s graduates will receive a certificate of completion.
It seems as though the primary reason why this program has gained traction in Asia is due to a very influential woman,Amy Lua, a director for both the universities’ business schools.
Lua has introduced these programs because there is a shortage of women in the boardroom for Asian countries; which is exactly the extra push that some women need in order to break that glass ceiling in certain businesses.
These courses focus on methods of leadership, stock exchange regulations, conflict resolution and ethics.
Just to get back to my original statement, I do believe that the nature of the collectivist society throws women an extra obstacle to overcome when pursuing dreams of becoming the CEO of a Fortune 100 company.
The primary reason why is due to the societal expectations of women in a collectivist society, where women are not necessarily raised with the expectation that they will be the next CEOs of the nation.
Instead, a collectivist society may look down upon women who strive to be in a C-Level position as most men; so, the pressure is definitely raised when familial reputation and image is perceived as everything in a person’s life.
These are just possible explanations, theories. I’m just glad that Asian colleges and universities are adapting more programs for women who strive to go beyond the expectation in pursuit of their ideal reality; these directorship courses are a step in the right direction.