When we realize that such a large portion of our time is actually spent at work, one would think we would be motivated to make this time as pleasant as possible. However, many of us know that this is not always the case. Most people have some sort of war stories from work that involve a difficult coworker or boss who seems bent on making our lives miserable.
Motherhood is often treated as something we can do on the side, while we keep charging ahead with our preconceived plans about what other parts of our lives will look like. The thing is, none of us actually know what we're getting into. We are out of our minds to think that caregiving and child rearing are invisible, background and secondary.
When it comes to women in tech, we know there needs to be a shift in attitude. Especially for females first entering and aiming to follow a progressive career path. While many emerging into the industry from technology programs worldwide, once in their field, there is still little advancement into upper management positions.
Creating work environments that reflect the reality that both women and men are working and raising children is critical to not only women, but to the competitiveness of the economy. We are not maximizing the talent pool when 50 per cent of the population is absent from the vast majority of leadership roles that shape our economy.
If you're a young woman just beginning her career, unfortunately there is no blueprint for success. No set of rules or guidelines to follow, no guarantee of "having it all." The truth is we all work at different companies and in different industries, report to different leaders, face different challenges and, most importantly, want different things.
Unfortunately, South Korea still has a long way to go in terms of females getting opportunities in leadership positions. The number of female politicians in South Korea is 49 out of 300 members of parliament and South Korea had a 37.4 per cent gender wage gap, which was the largest gap among OECD countries in 2014..
Early in my career, employment equity took hold. It caused much bitter complaining that such human resource department meddling had no place in the meritocracy we called our workplace. The latest resurrection of these arguments is fuelled by Justin Trudeau's promise to have equal gender representation in Cabinet.
There are many lessons aspiring women leaders can learn from sports coaches and managers. First, there's the importance of connecting with others to build a cohesive team, then there's using positive self-talk to enhance performance, and finally there is looking forward, rather than backward, when the opposition scores a goal.
What was the biggest risk you've taken with your professional life? Caitlyn Jenner took a risk that could have cost her the money that comes with being a public figure. She had no idea if the public would accept her, if she would be a "celebrity" or not. The risk was worth it for her, even if the risk sent her into obscurity.
It's no longer a matter of discretion on the part of employers to permit smoking in the workplace. Why? Because its effects are known to be toxic. Sexual harassment can be no less toxic to those affected. It's time our political leaders got that message. They need to stop allowing employers, including governments themselves, to turn a blind eye when sexual harassment and reprisals occur, and put in place tough laws that really protect women.
It is widely acknowledged that Japan needs more females in business to make up for a shrinking workforce and to boost economic growth and opportunity. With this admirable goal in mind, we must work to make Japan a nation where every individual, male and female, has equal opportunities to realize their full social, economic and political potential. As a Japanese youth, I am not afraid to break from traditional practices and defy what is expected of me. I am ready to pursue my own dream to become a fearsome business leader and 2014 G(irls)20 Delegate representing Japan.
The Atlantic just ran a long piece titled The Confidence Gap, in which the authors remind us that because of self-doubt, women make less money, receive fewer promotions and rarely land top roles. The message is clear: grow a pair, or enjoy your crappy view from the bottom rungs. It is no good that insecurity and anxiety are the reins holding back a woman at work. But I'm tired of being told the key to success is to change. Man up. Woman down. Instead, corporations could join the 21st century and see "female qualities" as virtues.
The Lean In zeitgeist says individual women can take personal responsibility for failure and act to achieve success. Meanwhile, recent research says there is an unconscious bias in corporate Canada that prevents equally qualified women from attaining the same level of success as men. The Lean In school is decidedly wrong. In short, both men and women need to lean in to create equity in business. It's the only way to achieve balance.
How do you react when faced with stress in the workplace? Do you take a step back to study the situation or do you charge full steam ahead? According to a new study, most female executives apparently retreat to analyze their options while their male counterparts charge right ahead and take charge. The study suggests that the approach women leaders take is detrimental to their career.
Posing the question, would you prefer to work for a man or women strikes me as treading in dangerous territory. For one, it insinuates that men and women fall into different stereotypical "types" as leaders. It also assumes that a terrible or wonderful manager somehow remains representative of his or her entire gender.