Whether it’s building a trailblazing corporate career, starting a business, or having a powerful social impact, some women set examples that show us that age is no barrier to success.
There are countless lists that champion the bravery, spunk, and never-ending energy of young achievers. But we often ignore the incredible grit and courage it takes to make a big career move after 40. Women with families are constantly under pressure to balance work and their families.
In many cases, some of our brightest and most capable women drop out of the workforce to be full-time caregivers.
Working Mums Deserve More Recognition
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According to a Ministry of Manpower’s 2018 Labour Force Survey, about 81% of women in their 30s and 82% of those in their 40s were found to be unemployed and were no longer looking for work due to family responsibilities in Singapore.
Another study from Bright Horizons has also revealed that mothers who are still in the workforce struggle with being “overlooked or left behind” due to old-fashioned assumptions. This is the reason they miss the chance to showcase their unique skills and in most cases, take on a leadership roles.
But there is a way to break this chain. If more working mums were supported and celebrated, this capable workforce can still manage to juggle both—work and home. They need to be lauded for pushing the pedal on their careers despite the odds against them.
This is where the 40 Over 40 List initiative comes into play.
Singapore’s 40 Over 40 List Recognises Powerhouse Working Mums
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In order to celebrate inspiring women leaders over the age of 40, Mums@Work Singapore along with its subsidiary Career Navigators will be partnering with theAsianparent, Southeast Asia’s largest community for parents, to launch this year’s 40 Over 40 List.
This initiative lets women share their stories of taking a chance to make a career move after 40. This, despite the odds against them.
“In my 10 years as a founder and Chief Executive Officer (“CEO”), I have met countless women who have successfully pushed the boundaries to forge rewarding careers, on their own terms. It takes an immense amount of courage, and yet, their achievements and contributions often go unrecognised. With the 40 Over 40 List, I hope Singapore can come together to celebrate the wisdom and transformation of these women who prove that age is simply a number,” says Sher-Li Torrey, about the inspiration behind the list.
“As a working mother myself, I understand the challenges that mothers face when balancing motherhood and work. Many within theAsianparent community are CEOs of their households, and taking the risk to embark on new career journeys can be daunting. We need to recognise the remarkable achievements these women have made, which requires great strength, determination and endurance”, said Roshni Mahtani Cheung, Founder and Group Chief Executive Officer of theAsianparent Group.
The Group (theAsianparent) will play an instrumental role in bringing more awareness about this initiative.
theAsianparent in particular will work towards encouraging parents to nominate outstanding women above 40 through VIP Parents, its parenting community management platform built to provide mums and dads with an alternative income source as they review, promote, and engage with brands they love.
Initiative Also Supported by Twitter And The General Assembly
As Head of Inclusion & Diversity, JAPAC, Twitter Preet Grewal reiterates, “Twitter’s foundation is the diversity of voices on our platform, so it’s important that our Tweeps are representative of that diversity. The pandemic has disproportionately impacted women and it is important now more than ever to double down on Inclusion & Diversity. At Twitter, our vision is to have half of our global workforce be made up of women by 2025. At present, more than 42% of our employees are women. I am really happy to support the Singapore 40-over-40 campaign and congratulations to all the phenomenal women whose transformational journeys will be highlighted during the campaign.”
“As a society, we tend to glamourise the stories of people that find success at a young age, implying that the accomplishments of young rising stars should outshine the achievements of those in later years. This creates the perception of an arbitrary ceiling on things that one must do by a certain point in life. However, I believe that those willing to make bold moves later in life should be similarly lauded for their grit and courage to venture into unfamiliar territory,” shares Aziza Sheerin, Managing Director, Asia at General Assembly.
“At GA, we champion the risk-takers over 40, those with the attitude and ambition to make career changes and pursue work they love. We’re pleased to be a part of the 40 over 40 initiative, and hope it will inspire others in knowing it’s never too late to try something new,” adds Sheerin.
Here’s Your Chance To Nominate Women Who’ve Made An Impact
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Nominations are open to Singapore-based women born on or before 31 December 1980 and can be submitted on the 40 Over 40 website.
The list will highlight female leadership in three categories. These include Entrepreneurship, Career Transformation, and Social Impact—particularly for women who have made these career moves after the age of 40. These nominations are open till 31 March 2021, and women are strongly encouraged to nominate themselves.
The organising team will begin the shortlisting and verification process in April. And, the final list to be published by May. The initiative encourages women to nominate themselves, especially those who have made big career moves after reaching 40.
So if you know any remarkable and inspiring women who should be on the list, do submit your nomination and let us all celebrate women!