Women in the UAE have shown themselves to be more ambitious than a large number of those in Europe, according to the Hays 2016 Global Gender Diversity Report, published on Tuesday by recruiting experts Hays.
The survey, which was completed by over 11,500 working professionals globally, found that 18 per cent of UAE based females believe they would need to reach MD or CEO level in order to feel successful in their careers. This is compared to 11 per cent in Britain, 8 per cent in France, 7 per cent in Germany, and 4 per cent in the Netherlands.
How does female ambition compare to male counterparts in the UAE?
The survey results showed men to be marginally more ambitious than women with 21 per cent of men wanting to reach CEO or MD level (compared to 18 per cent of UAE females, as mentioned above). Similarly, 89 per cent of men aspire to reach top leadership positions in their career, compared to 80 per cent of women.
"I would not expect the results to show any significant differences in male and female ambition," says Bethan Robbins, Business Director at Hays UAE.
"Generally speaking, I think some men could be considered more aggressive in their approach to career progression, yet I would say this is the same all over the world. From my 18 years of working experience, I have seen that success is down to individual drive, irrespective of gender," says Bethan.
With regards to gender diversity in the region, 54 per cent of women and 32 per cent of men surveyed believe that career opportunities are different according to gender.
"The UAE certainly has a more male-dominated working environment however there is a lot of emphasis at the moment onto supporting women's careers and driving female success."
"Princess Haya bint Al Hussein, wife of Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, is Patron of the Dubai Business Women Council, which was established in 2002 and has a number of initiatives promoting women's success in the region. From regular networking events, to discussion groups and small business support groups, the council ensures that female success is encouraged and promoted in the UAE."
The Hays Global Gender Diversity Report suggests that gender alone does not dictate career success. In reality, success is individually determined, a theme that was mirrored in the Hays 2016 GCC Salary & Employment report, whereby 77 per cent of pay rises in 2015 were given as a result of individual's proactively seeking a salary increase.
"Women make excellent leaders and are capable of running organisations and taking on senior leadership roles. My advice to anyone who wants to reach their full career potential is to be confident in your abilities and learn from any mistakes you make along the way," adds Bethan.