contributed by Ashley Blake
This year, the theme for International Women’s Day is Balance for Better, a call for collective action in a unified direction. Women from around the world – particularly in business, the media, in government and in the boardroom – are standing up for gender balanced practices across industries in sectors. First celebrated in 1911, International Women’s Day is a chance for both women and men to stand in solidarity for women’s rights and progress across the globe.
With Blue Heron’s China business focus, we are highlighting these China-related trends of women on the rise. Here are 5 reasons to celebrate!
- Spending Power Rising. While China’s GDP continues to grow at an estimated rate of 7.9% over the next 10 years, women are the forefront of the purchasing power with higher incomes and more discretionary funds for things like dining out and apparel. Workforce participation continues to rise as well at 67% and nearly 76% of women aspiring to top jobs according to this McKinsey report.
- Top Global Talent. According to a recent Forbes list, Asia is home to some of the most powerful women in the world in business, politics and in the board room. Chinese women also make up 63% of the world’s self-made billionaires
- Positive & Inspiring Messages Sell. These analysts found that brands that portray powerful, successful women and advocate progressive feminist values are increasingly gaining an edge in China. Key drivers include financial independence of Chinese women and more liberal social attitudes, including marrying older and resisting extreme familial pressure.
- Corporate Culture is Changing.In the workplace, many women are directly in charge of policies, lending a powerful voice to effect structural change in corporate culture. This change is critical in the hiring process, where women often experience discrimination, for implementing and enforcing policies around workplace harassment, and for women supporting women through collaboration, mentorship and solidarity.
- Half Day Holiday Even though Women’s Day in China is sometimes more commercial than genuine, female employees doget a half day off and often use it for a special treat like a dinner out or trip to the spa. Now that’s a good way to celebrate the day!
Don’t forget to use the hashtag #BalanceforBetter today and throughout the year, and have a 妇女节快乐(Happy Women’s Day)!
Ashley Blake is the founder of Traverse Journeys, an impact-based adventure travel provider with a focus on social and environmental accountability.