WOMEN IN CAREER BEYOND HOME
“Whatever you give a woman, she will make it greater. If you give her a sperm, she’ll give you a baby. If you give her a house, she will give you a home. If you give her groceries, she will give you a meal. If you give her a smile, she will give you her heart. She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her.” – Erick S. Gray
You would quite agree with Erick Gray, if you look at the women who have changed the world, who revolutionized and inspired the society in the history.
Men have played their parts, but it is the women that have always been the subject of admiration over the course of world histories. Who would disagree with all the major impacts made by Cleopatra, Begum Hazrat Mahal, Indira Gandhi, Mother Teresa, Marie Curie, Helen Keller and Jane Austen? Be it politics, sciences, social services or literature, the women are everywhere making names beyond the home.
Beyond home and to Infinity
“The good thing is that women have such high expectations of men that it inspires us to live up to them. That’s what I learned about male-female relationships.” – Neil Strauss
When people think about politics and business, they think about huge responsibilities, confusing legal documents, large auditing numbers and uncountable headaches. However, when people think about women doing politics and businesses, there is so much hostility, stereotypes and misconceptions, of women being the weaker gender. Nevertheless, people need to clear up their thoughts sooner or later.
There are numbers of women increasing in business positions day-by-day, and there are even a few business corporations solely belongs to women. And then, there is definitely business industry completely dominated by women – bridal and facial centre, make-up and beauty salons, cosmetics, Mehndi arts, spas, saree boutiques and most notably wedding stylist and planners.
Not only have they be their own boss, but they also tend to provide various levels of learning centre to guide and set examples for the younger generation of teen girls under them. Besides all of these, women have also been successful in various Non Governmental Organizations and government related political parties, showing much greater leadership qualities.
Although the women have shown to be competitive and successful as men, there are still gender discrimination and misconceptions in major business organizations, which closes the business opportunities on women. Well, we know most of them are wrong.
In contrast to that, MIBrand, who actively supports the women, encourages them to enter the business world, as a measure to break those gender barriers and overcome the stereotypes and misconceptions. There is also a research that shows companies with more women are more profitable than those with fewer women, and some research shows that women out performs men in career.
According to the result of a general survey conducted by the Pew Research Center on the late of 2014, most women capable of reaching a top executive position in business and politics while starting a family early in the career. These women have also shown to perform better than men, but they are hardly hired and appointed due to general misconceptions.
The number of women capable of reaching top in businesses and politics while starting a family early in career are shown to be higher than women who are better off starting a family later in career. Much to the shock, their number is also higher than the men capable of reaching top in business and politics who would start a family early in career.
This alone proves, that the women have no problems excelling in careers beyond home while starting a family and having children early in their career, compared to men.
The same research also shows that women not only good at handling politics better than men, but it also shows that they are more honest and ethical, improves the society and stand up to their principles better than the men.
While in business, the women are shown to be good at being honest and ethical, provide fair settlement, mentoring employees, and negotiating profitable business deals, much better than men. The only things they are shown to be weaker are in taking risk compared to men, which are the only thing they are shown to be better than the women.
Even though they are shown to outperform the men, they are still hardly hired or appointed in political and business organization due to several misconceptions.
The highest misconception is that most organizations in politics and business put unrealistic higher expectations on women. The other misconception includes is that the women are beginners and still in the learning process, and have other distracting commitments such as family responsibilities. Lastly, the women is also thought to be weaker and powerless than men in the survey, a common stereotype among organizations.
The stereotype also causes most women to feel insecure and inferior to the society, causing many women to hold back from stepping forward into the business world. Women might not be the weaker gender, but they are still afraid of criticism of being labelled as weak, as much as men would afraid of criticism. This makes the women too hesitant to make decisions and express opinion openly in society.
The stereotypes of women being the weaker gender should be abolished as it is misleading most of the organizations not to hire women, who could actually elevate their profits into higher levels.
We at MIBrand does not only exist to create awareness, but also to believe in equality, as to us, the women can do and change as much as the men can do and change any organizations.
Acknowledgment of successful Malaysian women
There’s a lot of influential women all around the world, and in Malaysia, we have plenty of them. Here are some of the famous, influential women of Malaysia from human activist, politics, business and entertainment; that have made names in career working beyond the home.
Datin Paduka Mother Mangalam
Together with Swami Satyananda, her mentor Mother Mangalam co-founded the Pure Life Society in 1952 and has devoted her entire life serving the less fortunate. She is indeed a mother to the orphans and underprivileged children the Society takes in, and she has never forgotten her roots. Her outstanding contributions in promoting the welfare of the underprivileged and fostering national unity was recognized and honoured through the Merdeka Award 2010. Her selfless, giving spirit is indeed an inspiration to us all.
Tan Sri Dr. Zeti Akhtar Aziz was known for being the second longest serving Governor of Bank Negara Malaysia. She is significantly famous for aiding Malaysia, not only to overcome the Asian financial crisis in 1998 but also made the Malaysia as one of the important foreign investors in Islamic money market.
Dato Ambiga Sreenevasan is the icon of human rights who guided the Malaysian to live by the constitutional rights. She was awarded International Women of Courage Award by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in 2009.
Datin Paduka Marina Mahathir, the daughter of Tun Mahathir Mohammad, is the most inspirational woman and the heroic protector of women and children’s rights. She raised her voice through NGOs and Malaysian AIDS Foundation, as she was the president of the Malaysian AIDS Council, her voice shone lights on AIDS victims and gave them hope. Her effort also made AIDS treatment more reachable and supported largely by both government as well as religious leaders.
Joining the list is Datin Seri Endon Mahmood, the wife of former Prime Minister Abdullah Badawi. She was the voice of Malaysian Cancer Awareness and the one that brought international fashion status for Batik craft and Songket.
As in Malaysian entertainment, Tan Sri Michelle Yeoh was the first ever Asian to be cast in the James Bond series, Tomorrow Never Dies and fame never stopped her as her movie the Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon nominated for 11 Oscars and her other movie, Memoirs of Geisha, nominated for 6 Oscars.
Joining her is Yasmin Ahmad, known for her controversial and thought provoking movies and commercials, but the subjects she helped Malaysian to change their perceptions includes racial discrimination and unity.
Other women, who made huge names in entertainment and achieved international fame includes Sheila Majid, the Jazz Queen of Malaysia. Her concert in Londons West End Royalty Theater in 1996 was sold out.
Dato’ Siti Nurhaliza binti Tarudin is the other leading female who achieved similar successes. From songwriter to businesswoman, she has been listed to win the most awards to date.
And for sports, Datuk Nicole Ann David is one of the big names in international sports rankings. She is the five time world champion for Squash and the first Asian sportswoman to be ranked first by WISPA.
The other Malaysian sport woman that made memorable achievement is Pandelela Rinong, the first Malaysian woman to win an Olympic medal and inspired most Malaysian students to venture into aquatic sports.