Geographies in Depth

A woman is most likely to be your boss in these countries

Four women having a business meeting in a coffee shop

You are more likely to have a female boss if you live in African or Caribbean countries. Image:  LinkedIn Sales Solutions/Unsplash

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Education, Gender and Work

  • In African and Caribbean countries women are more likely to have managerial jobs than in other parts of the world, according to the International Labor Organization.
  • Belarus ranks highest among the European countries listed, coming in 13th, with 50.5% of female managers.
  • Women are most likely to hold managerial positions in human resources, administration, finance, marketing, or public relations.

If you are working in Togo, Nigeria, Jordan or a number of countries included in the below list, it is actually more likely that your boss is a woman than a man. This is according to numbers released by the International Labor Organization. Togo led the pack with more than 70 percent of all managerial positions filled by women in 2017. But the numbers also show that only 13 out of all countries reporting these figures to the ILO between 2016 and 2020 have achieved gender parity in leadership positions.

The highest-ranking European country is Belarus in rank 13, with 50.5 percent of female managers. Generally, Eastern European countries and former Soviet Republics score high in the ranking as do African and Caribbean nations.


How is the World Economic Forum promoting equity in the workplace?

Laos in rank four and the Philippines in rank 11 are also outliers as the highest-ranked Asian countries. While Laos' success is in part achieved by its socialist government, the situation is different in the Philippines. The ILO notes that women are most likely to hold managerial positions in human resources, administration, finance, marketing or public relations – areas the organization defines as business support functions. The success of female managers in the Philippines therefore ties in with the strong local business process outsourcing industry. Women are over-represented in the sector as a whole and make up as many as two-thirds of employees in data processing and around three-quarters of those working in medical transcription, according to the Philippines Statistics Authority.

Where women are most likely to be your boss.
This chart shows the countries with the highest percentages of female managers in 2020. Image: Statista
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