How To Retain Talent At The Workplace, Without Gender Bias

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Words : Lakmini Wijemanne

Sri Lanka has always been a patriarchal society where the male personality is more evident in the outer society than the female. Females have been taking a more active role in fashioning the personal societies – the immediate family and the extending family circles – than working in the outer society. It is only since recent times that more females in our country has ventured out , in a more significant fashion, to work outside the family environment – that is, at a workplace.
The journey, or the entrance of the female to the male dominant workplace has been an  extremely slow process, yet, the tenacity she shows in all her previous personal domains has come to her stead here, and she has been quite successful in creating her own niche in the workplace, albeit in a minute fashion. This was the situation a few decades back.
Today, female workforce representation in the country is at a significantly high level and she has erupted into more work fields than was expected. The feminine presence in many work-fields is quite common today, with representation in a lot of previously male dominant fields . From the lowliest work grades to the highest , the female presence is quite apparent in the work places.  There are female pilots flying the national carrier, female naval officers, female managers, entrepreneurs, etc. Yet, the road to where she is today has not been a path strewn with rose petals, neither is it any easier today. Every step she kept in the front, she has had to face a struggle to retain her foot hold, since the invisible gender bias still has quite a presence in every strata of work . It is not only true of Sri Lanka, but it is the fact about the whole world ! According to reports, only 4% of Fortune 500 companies in the world , are led by female CEO’s!

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