The Dutch government decides for a 30 % Female Quota in the commissioner’s board
We NEED more women playing in the bigger league
It is proven when more women take high positions, the happiness and well-being of the workforce will improve. The profit of the company grows and there is more harmony everywhere.
Why is it then that there are so few women in boardrooms?
There are many reasons I can see, such as:
Men are operating on a higher level so much longer than women are.
Not so long ago our moms were not working. They were at home taking care of the children and the household. Women still need to get used to the fact that working full time and have a high position or big business is totally possible. Also when having children.
Women position themselves differently than men
When a woman is asked for a position she will hesitate when she sees tasks she is not yet capable of. Men figure they will find out and are not hindered by that fact.
Women like to be modest men like to bluff
Women will only mention something as one of her assets when she has accomplished it. And even then she will think of it as bragging. Men don’t think that way, they are proud of their achievements and for them, it is important to get the status that goes with the assets.
The old boy’s network
Men have strong bonds and connections and are strategic in their networking. Therefore they often hear from first hand when a position will be available. And this is a system, that keeps itself in place. I am not saying this is on purpose and that women are not welcome.
I cannot speak from my own experience because I have always had my own business, but from what I hear when a woman reaches the top she often is not supporting other women. If that is true that is awful, because she, for sure, she did not get there without the support of other men and women.
Women need to support each other the same way men do and also create strong bonds.
Strategic networking with networks for women who have high positions is a good idea.
The part-time mentality
My country, The Netherlands is a bad example when it comes to working part-time. We are the worlds number one with women working in part-time jobs. I’ve read when every woman in my country would work 1 more hour there would be no vacancies and our economy would grow enormously. Working part-time is a choice. When doing so, operating in the big league will be very difficult because often many hours are required with the top positions.
After every strong man stands a strong woman
It takes a strong and emancipated husband to support his wife to work full-time and let her bring in more money while he steps back a little. For us women, this is often a natural step to take. But the other way around seems to be more difficult.
Many women don’t consider a position in an advisory board
Why is this the case? Simply because they have not heard about it. For a long time, I was not even aware that such an entity existed. I always thought it would stop when you are the highest director.
The women are not there
This is what is often the reason why a vacant commissioners function is taken by yet another man. But there is searching and searching. And finding the right women needs a different approach than the current ones. Yes, probably more time is needed. But the women are there!
Women are overruled more easily.
I heard of a story wherein the advisory boardroom with 4 women and 3 men, somehow the men managed to make the decisions. What happened? Men did what they always do. Talk to each other in the breaks and creating bonds and alliances, when the women were drinking a coffee and using the breaks to relax and chit chat. When the meeting continued the men advocated their common decisions and the women were not prepared. I am bot blaming either of them, there is just learning here.
My personal opinion about female quota
I have always been against a female quota because my statement was “women need to start working more if they have big ambitions and learn to manage their household and kids better and delegate more.” It is what I did with my business.
I started small as most of us do, but my business did not stay small. And when the kids came that was a great opportunity for me to learn to delegate and outsource more. My first employee entered the business when I took pregnant leave. And when you have one staff member, the step to more is a lot easier.
I now think differently about female quota because of all the unconscious biases we still have about men and women in the working arena.
In my own area “Women in Business” the same issues are at play.
- Women do not start a business as often as men.
- Women’s businesses are a lot smaller than those of men.
- They take fewer risks, (which can also be good, but growth will go slower)
- They position themselves not a strong as they are.
- Also, they have less affinity with the money part of the business.
In this article, I took the black and white position to make things clear. There are many women who are different and there are many men who are different too. And there are lots of men who support women and fight for us to be treated equally.
There is so much which women can learn from men though, without becoming a man on heels, wearing a skirt. And of course, this goes vice versa. We can all learn from one another.
When you want to know topic like female quota know more about Tineke Rensen
Tineke Rensen is in business for 29 years. She built an international Outdoor and Survival business from scratch and sold this after 22 years.
Tineke was a national whitewater kayaking champion.
She now is one of the most all-round business accelerators you can find. There are very few topics she cannot help you within your business. Many people find it hard to believe when they hear this. How much do you think you know about a topic if you live it day and night for 28 years?
Tineke works with female business owners to grow to their full business potential. She uses her own system the “Blueprint for a Successful Business Makeover”. She is a women’s business coach.
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