• People Centric SHRS

Breaking Glass Ceilings – Jamaica Leads the World with the Highest Percentage of Women in Management

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There is great news about Jamaica on the international scene as it relates to business and management – this comes from the recent accomplishment of having the highest percentage in women in management and leadership positions. Jamaica reigns supreme – outpacing first world countries such as the USA and the United Kingdom.

As the Merriam Webster dictionary puts it, a glass ceiling is an intangible barrier within a hierarchy that prevents women or minorities from obtaining upper-level positions. It is an undeniable fact, that women have had to contend with and shatter many glass ceilings in order to live what would ordinarily be considered a ‘normal life’.

Present day, in many countries around the world, girls are marginalised with getting an education, women are unable to vote, cannot acquire a driver’s license and are censored for the way they dress or even interact with male counterparts. It is against this backdrop that we consider the triumph in breaking these glass ceilings – one at a time.

To this end, the International Labour Organization embarked on a global study entitled “Women in Business and Management – Gaining Momentum”, in which it was revealed that Jamaica – the land of likkle but tallawah – was the global leader in women with managerial capacities. [Insert celebratory vuvuzela sounds here].

Though this is no ordinary feat and must not be taken lightly, it did not come by happenstance. In recent memory, our girls have outperformed boys in academics and show better passes all the way through to the tertiary level. There is also a higher percentage of women pursuing higher education degrees at the Bachelor’s and Master’s levels. Women have become an unignorable force in the workspace – adding value in organization, decision-making and leadership.

Yet many glass ceilings remain firmly intact. The managerial positions held by women are found in short list of specialities to include Human Resource Management, Public Relations, Communications and Administration. A quick glance at more technically-oriented fields such as Information Technology, Engineering and Security are still strongly male-dominated. So, what’s next?

Both men and women have a responsibility to this generation and the next to bring balance to the notion power in all domains – public life, corporate life, family life. It is important to acknowledge the strengths that complement each other and maximise our effectiveness and productivity by building stronger teams together.

Wherever glass ceilings exist, there is opportunity to change the status quo and revolutionize the world.

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