Female Asian Leadership and Asian Leadership in the West

Rapid economic growth in Asia is creating more opportunities for women, yet they are still underrepresented in senior roles. Similar to the deficit of Asian leaders in the West, women are twice as least likely to be in senior roles such as CFO or CEO. The pattern is constant across business despite an increase in qualified women in recent years. Again, this can be considered against a pattern in the US where there is a clear disproportion between the potential of higher performing Asian Americans in academia and entrepreneurship, and their representation in roles of leadership within large corporations, universities, and government.

The benefits of having more women in senior roles is linked to stronger financial performance, and  women leaders work in different ways from men and can bring real competitive advantage to their field. Likewise, 20 percent of the students in Ivy League schools are of Asian decent, and with more than 50 percent of the workforce of Silicon Valley, there is clearly a vast pool of talent waiting to be tapped and cultivated for leading biggest businesses to a healthy future. Women need vastly larger representation in leading roles in Asia, and Asians of both genders need greater opportunity to lead in the West.

In a report by Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), individual strategies for success include getting support from a mentor, promoting your achievements and joining female networks. There are interesting parallels here regarding women in the highest positions in Asia and both male and female Asian professionals in similarly senior roles in the West.

naisA Global was created to support young Asian professionals globally, both male and female, and their growth and progression to the highest positions in their industry. We have a number of specific programs and resources to help our members achieve this. For example, our naisA Flash Advice (nFA) mentoring program is designed to help our members overcome many of the barriers they typically face. Our experts help with planning career paths, developing the right experience, seek out new opportunities, understanding one’s business from a senior management perspective, and developing confidence, self-belief, and motivation, among other valuable assistance. naisA’s online platform is a place where our mentors and protégés keep up on what’s going on in the Asian business world and beyond, where we share professional and leadership advice and information on how to promote themselves and their achievements.

Most leading figures in Asia want to increase the number of Asian leaders in their companies’ highest positions, but there is a concern about a lack of available Asian leadership talent. Yet, businesses and industry across the continent, in Japan, China, Korea, and India, often have large numbers of Asian senior staff. Young Asian talent is very much on the rise, and it’s not a case of if for young professionals taking leadership roles, but when.

Our protégés are the most talented young Asian professionals based in America, across Asia and the rest of the world. They are male and female, and each have their own specific goals and plans for success. With naisA’s help they are determined to be the next generation of great leaders.