Women in Leadership and Related Challenges in Business
The presence of women in employment has improved dramatically throughout the years due to the equity policy. However, the progression of women into positions of leadership has been rather slow. Women compose a large part of the adult population in South Africa, while a relatively low percentage of women are actively involved in the contribution to the economy and in leadership roles. It is necessary to first gather information relating to women in business more so in leadership roles in order to determine the barriers they face in these positions. The purpose of the research is to assess the impediments face by females within the South African business environment. This study was undertaken to identify the challenges faced by women with leadership positions within their working environments. The initial findings revealed that women leaders perceive discrimination, family-life demands, prejudice, and stereotyping as barriers that prevent women from entering management positions and lower the professional progression rate for them. This study shows that women aspire whether they act and motivate themselves to advance for top management positions or not. The majority of women in the study felt that mentorshipand training could increase their preparedness for leadership roles.
Keywords - South Africa, women in employment, family life demand, females, professional progression rate, top management