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Where are all the female executives in the world?

They’re in BRIC countries: Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa with over surpasses 30% of executives being female, exceeding the global average of 24%.



  • Russia: 43%
  • Indonesia: 41%
  • Latvia: 41%
  • Philippines: 40%
  • Lithuania: 39%
  • China: 38%
  • Thailand: 38%
  • Estonia: 37%
  • Armenia: 35%
  • Georgia: 35%


  • Spain: 22%
  • U.S.: 22%
  • U.K.: 20%
  • Denmark: 14%
  • Germany: 14%
  • India: 14%
  • United Arab Emirates: 14%
  • Switzerland: 13%
  • Netherlands: 10%
  • Japan: 9%

One reason why: Women are graduating from higher education at rates equivalent or greater to men in those BRIC countries.

That said, women in general in those countries are a small percentage of the overall workforce compared to Europe or North America.

For those countries that impose quotas saying that you have to have a certain amount of women like Norway or Spain, they have some of the lowest rates of women in management.

The good news is that those numbers of women executives in general, are on the rise; it was only 19% in 2004 and now it’s at 24% globally.


  • Liquid

    In Canada there are more female undergrads than males so the future looks even more promising for workplace equality 🙂 Glad to see them numbers for women rising world wide. If females execs are doing so well in BRIC countries I wonder if women leaders in frontier markets are doing even better!

  • Michelle

    I’m want to get into upper management soon, it is one of my life goals. The sad thing is, I find a lot of women to be very catty about helping other women into the higher ranks – at least in my experience. It’s sad that people think that way, we should be empowering each other not clawing eyes out. I find that if you’re not assertive enough, you get passed over for promotions, etc.

    • save. spend. splurge.

      It’s the Queen Bee syndrome. Women don’t like to help other women… Also, if you’re assertive you’re not confident or assertive, you’re “bitchy”.

  • Alicia @ Financial Diffraction

    Well, hopefully I will reach there at one point and help bring up the average 🙂 I just need a few years! Or to start my own business.

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