• Women in business 2018

Grant Thornton reveals that the proportion of women in senior management positions in 2018 Thailand ranks third, highest after the Philippines and Indonesia, a result that appears to be continually improving.

Grant Thornton International Business Report (IBR) revealed that in 2018, businesses with women in senior management positions rose to 42% from 31% in 2017, a 11% rise that now puts Thailand at third in the world. Results for all top three countries was very close with the Philippines in first at 47% and Indonesia second at 43%. This was an impressive result especially given that the top three ranking countries are all from the ASEAN region. In the meantime, of the countries surveyed, Japan maintains last place with just 5% of senior management positions being held by women. The survey further reveals that the hospitality and tourism sector is the industry with the highest number of women in senior management positions at 33%, while construction ranks lowest at 19%.

Julaporn Namchaisiri, Managing Director – Corporate Finance says, “Presently, women’s roles have changed. There is a lot of encouragement and acceptance of women’s potential. Many countries in Asia and other continents, for example, Taiwan, Myanmar, Nepal, Croatia, Mauritius, and Lithuania have selected women to take the countries’ leading positions. Moreover, women’s roles in developing countries have also significantly changed. For example, in the past, the driving factor of a country’s economy has mainly been from the industrial sector where the majority of labour is made up of men; however, the latest statistic from Global Finance indicates that economies are moving towards being driven by the service sector where the majority of executives are women. It is also found that female labour accounts for 83% of the labour workforce in South East Asia. This shows the reduction of the social gap and that women are now being given more opportunities.”

Experts say that Thailand’s result is a good sign because corporations with gender diversity in senior management positions are capable of earning more profit than those where the majority is made up of one gender (either male or female).

The information from the World Economic Forum says that the world has been trying to reduce the gender gap, which is about 59% in economic sector and 29% in political sector. The world has changed now. Many women have stepped up to take on leading roles, more require improved gender equality, more are becoming significant political leaders, and more are stepping up for senior management positions. We know that female populations, in some countries, are even more than men, thus, the labour shortage problem can be solved if there are equal career opportunities.

“Nowadays, social culture has changed. Women are given more opportunities in both education and career. Women are graduating at higher levels and rivaling their male counterparts. There is an open floor for women and this is a good sign. Once women are given equal opportunities and the same rights as men, they have real potential when it comes to a country’s competitive advantage in many aspects – even higher than before,” says Julaporn.