Although a majority of investment professionals in Hong Kong agree that gender-balanced teams lead to better performance, almost half of them believe that gender inequality is still an issue. taboo in the workplace, according to the latest CFA Institute survey.
Additionally, 70% of respondents of both genders believe women are still pressured to “dress and look the part” in the industry.
Surveying 3,005 investment professionals in Asia-Pacific, the research found that 48% of Hong Kong respondents have an optimistic view of gender equality over the next decade, the third lowest among countries in the world. ‘APAC. Overall, more than half of survey respondents in Asia-Pacific (51%) said they were optimistic about the possibility of achieving gender equality in the next 10 years. Of these, investment professionals in India (72%) and mainland China (60%) are the most optimistic.
The study also found that 74% of its APAC respondents believe diversity in the workplace improves collaboration for better business results. Additionally, 74% of respondents said that gender balance in the workplace not only improves team performance, but also sends a strong message to employees, customers, investors and the public.
Despite positive trends in the industry, the survey also revealed that gender discrimination and workplace inequality are still present in the investment industry in Asia. Some 66% of women surveyed said they always felt uncomfortable talking about gender discrimination in their own workplace. Two-thirds of respondents in South Korea (66%) were the most reluctant to discuss gender inequality, followed by Hong Kong (44%), Singapore (43%) and mainland China (41%). ).
When asked why fewer women are in leadership positions, 27% of respondents in Hong Kong said women often sacrifice their careers due to social pressure to take the lead in managing family life . Some 22% believe the longer hours and higher stress of senior roles interfere with family chores, while 15% said women are less assertive and have less ability to manage both genders.
While 83% of respondents in Hong Kong advocate for gender parity, most respondents (44%) in Hong Kong believe that professional accreditation or certification is the best way to help reduce bias against women in finance.
Less than 40% of respondents agree that company-level strategies such as developing and supporting initiatives that promote equal pay for equivalent roles (37%), leadership should lead by example ( 36%), providing a safe environment for employees to report discriminatory behavior (36%), hiring a diverse mix of people in the company (35%), re-educating all employees on the subject (34%) can help restoring the gender balance in the investment sector.
Only 26% agree that increasing female representation on company boards is helpful.
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