Jaya Obhan writes about the hindrances women face going up the corporate ladder. For Jaya, the most important factor that influences a woman’s career growth is – her own belief in herself.
Despite all the noise about woman empowerment and feminism, we only get to see, very few women reaching the top level in any company. This being the trend across the globe. If we go by the statistics, only 15 to 20 per cent women reach the top level of any organization and there are series of complexities that result in this norm.
Peeping into women’s lives, either friends or family or acquaintances, we get to know of facts that are the basis of their reluctance to pursue leadership. Moreover, while reading about celebrities or listening to powerful women talk, we often get to hear similar attributes that contribute to hold women back.
The most important factor that influences a woman’s career growth is – her own belief in herself.
She always underestimates her capability to handle things and take decisions. If you compare a man and a woman, you will often find women accepting roles and salaries that are readily offered to them, instead of negotiating. This again has a statistical evidence. Only 7% women negotiate in any business.
One of the major causes for this, could be her social conditioning. Since childhood she is made aware of motherhood and parenting. ‘A good mother is one who spends more and more time with her child’ is a very strong belief of mankind. Therefore, her choice to stay away from home, makes her feel guilty. Consequently, much before her pregnancy, she starts making room for her baby.
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Greed to become a superwoman
Another reason is, her greed to become a superwoman. This doesn’t allow her to focus on one thing at a time, to achieve success. She wants to multitask and then judge herself of not being good enough. She wants to receive a salary, keep her home sparkling clean, spend quality time with her child, be as fresh for her husband as if in courtship, keep a check on grocery, etc. all this at once. It’s high time she learns to allocate work to other members of the house or outsource some chores.
Thus, it is imperative to teach our daughters, the next generation women, to make choices based on what would make them happy - a successful career or a personal fulfilment. Based on that they should make arrangements for the comfort of themselves, their children and other members of the family.
Moreover, as mothers we also need to educate our sons and give them equal opportunity to do the household tasks, be it cooking or instructing a maid.
Ironically, situation at the workplace has become better, than that at home. At work, there is more equality than there is at home. But it is mandatory to make our partners our strength. Egalitarianism in the house and having a systematic distribution of work between spouses can not only bring about better career opportunities for women but can surely also help in reducing the increasing divorce rates.
Egalitarianism in the house and having a systematic distribution of work between spouses can not only bring about better career opportunities for women but can surely also help in reducing the increasing divorce rates.
Ergo, we women need to stop feeling guilty, if we need to be out for work and let our families be, by themselves. We need to empower everyone around us to be independent - our children, our parents and our spouses. We need to have the confidence on ourselves and our families to support each other, as well as respect each other’s individuality.
Live to make yourself happy and you will reach higher. Let go and enjoy the ride and success will be, by your side!
Jaya Obhan is a Trainer/psychotherapist. Her debut novel ‘Stuck in Love’ published by ‘The Write Place’ is scheduled to be released on 3rd April 2018. The views expressed are author's own.