Q: What is the main challenge facing women who aspire to reach the top in the corporate world?

“A woman’s behaviour as a leader is judged more harshly and her contributions are scrutinised more stringently when compared to her male peers. We see a certain level of ‘gatekeeping’ towards women – especially in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) related industries. This gender bias is a challenge for women who aspire for career progression while managing societal expectations. Women doubt or second-guess their own abilities to take up leadership positions. This is why it’s important to challenge the status quo; confidence is key and one must always be true to oneself.

Stasshani Jayawardena

Executive Director
Head of Tourism & Leisure
Aitken Spence

Aitken Spence Hotel Managements