Does Gender Determine Your Career Path?
Much has been said about educating the girl child however, I tend to compare female education to Africans attaining their independence from the colonial rule; while it’s true one is emancipated, this only goes as far as indicating we are free – most of us still cling to the mindset that we’re still, somewhat inferior.
Most women were taught from a young age that getting married and raising a family was their ultimate achievement in life while men were brought up believing that their ultimate goal was to amass wealth. This has affected the girl child in the sense that she believes she can be ambitious in her career but not too ambitious because her main goal is to start her own family with a man who will fend for all their needs.
Most girls believe they don’t need to go all out with their ambition(s) despite the many opportunities out there for them; they will get a man who will be ambitious enough and make enough money for both of them.
As an AfricaTalentbank.com (ATB) Brand Ambassador (BA), I had the pleasure of attending the G-united careers event on 30th September 2015. During the tea break, I interacted with some ladies, two of whom were Human Resource personnel from a tech company. One remembered me from our interaction at her desk and mentioned that for the entire day, I was the only woman who approached her desk enquiring about pursuing a career in technology. Most of the female job seekers that came up to her that day, were inquiring about jobs in sales and marketing, human resource and finance. And she concluded that some careers are simply suited for women, while others are not, because of how they are structured.
As much as I am inclined to agree with that, some women have been known to take up careers considered better suited to their male counterparts only for them to excel beyond expectations. It is all about mindset. A few women are slowly breaking away from that. I have come across female bus conductors as well as drivers, so when it comes to matters of agility and strength, women are now accepting all kinds of careers that were formally considered taboo to them. All fields previously mainly male dominated are becoming level playing fields for both sexes. Most companies are opening up to the idea of providing equal opportunities for all, despite gender, race or tribe. Now all we need do is, break away from the mindset that limits us to the confines of our own doubts.
I don’t quite understand the concept of gender equality rather, I advocate for gender compatibility. A woman does not have to do what a man does, to prove a point but she should not be led to believe that there are things that she cannot achieve or indeed, do. Women should strive to attain the utmost highest positions rather than settling for the bare minimum.
To get a male perspective on this, please click link to read my colleague Mitch’s views – http://goo.gl/IkSnX4