Family firms in many parts of the world have led the way when it comes to providing women with senior roles for many years although as this article clearly shows there are parts of the world that are not as advanced in their thinking. It is great to see change and for family firms looking to the next generation talent pool in order to select future leaders on ability rather than sex as may have been the case in the past.
Attitudes are changing, and in some parts of the world need to change much more, but it is good to see more democracy in action, roles being deserved and those stepping up to lead the family firm having the necessary skills to do the job.
When it comes to the family firm looking to continue for generations, surely it can be seen that the best person should lead the way and enable the firm to pass on successfully if that is their desire, rather than get hung up around the gender of the leader. There are already some great family firms that are being run by women, very successfully, and hopefully these individuals will continue to act as role models for the future generations too.
Even today, resistance to women inheriting the family business persists. “Probably some of the males in my generation see it as a given that it is their right to succeed,” a third-generation female respondent from New Zealand told researchers for PwC’s 2016 Next Generation survey, which examined the views of the next generation of family business leaders and included a special section entitled: The Female Perspective. Because of the one-child policy, you’re seeing more China family firms willing to have the daughter take over. In the same PwC survey, 30% of the women interviewed had a seat on the board.... And more than 50% of the women interviewed did not think their gender would be a barrier to them running the family business, according to the 2016 survey.