By LEAH EICHLER via The Globe and Mail
If you blinked last week you might have missed it, but a trifecta of unrelated events took place reflecting a cultural shift in the perception of women in leadership roles. Each event – important in its own right – occurred in isolation but when viewed in unison, wield a significant impact.
First, the U.S. military lifted its ban on women serving in combat roles, which means they may apply to fight on the front lines and in elite commando units in one of the world’s largest armies. The United States now joins a number of countries allowing women to serve in combat roles. Canada has done so since 1989. Observers may debate whether women possess the same physical prowess as men but, in the end, this change by a global military superpower should have a positive impact on the perception of women’s abilities.
Second, Kathleen Wynne won the Ontario Liberal leadership, making her the first woman to serve as premier Canada’s most populous province. Canada now boasts six female premiers, representing a majority of citizens Although two of them have yet to be tested in a general election, it shows a maturing level of acceptability for female leaders in politics. (And it’s not just in Canada. Hillary Clinton’spopularity continues and speculation that the outgoing U.S. Secretary of State will make a run for the White House in 2016 remains rampant.)
Third, a Statistics Canada report showed that the number of women in the top 1 per cent of earners almost doubled in the past 20 years. This means more than 53,000 women in Canada generate an annual income of more than $201,400.
These three events demonstrate that physically, politically and financially the perception of women as leaders is becoming the new normal. This is not new to many commentators. Read full article>>