Should MNCs protect shareholder value by restricting the placement of female employees in certain foreign countries? Discuss sexism in international business.

Women have been constantly raising the bar when it comes to business success.  Here in America and some European countries, businesswomen thrive.  This notion is encouraging to say the least, but success does not come without conflict.  There are still many countries where women are held to a lower standard compared to men.  Some are restricted in the work place, some countries do not even allow women to hold a similar paying job as any man.  With this in mind, it would be foolish to think that a MNC could find success in any part of the world with a female doing the negotiating.

Many countries in the Middle East have harsh laws/regulations for women in general.  In some areas, women are not able to work in the same department as men.  These ‘rules’ are a part of a long religious tradition, and it doesn’t seem willing to change anytime soon.  Other areas of the world have less harsh rules, but the message is the same:  Women are not equal to men in the work place.

American working  culture even has its setbacks for women.  Business culture can be very sexist towards women.  Whether it be expressed in subtle harassment to a blatant sexual assault, sexism is everywhere in the USA.  Our country has made strides in the battle for equality, however.  The ‘Secretary’ title has all but disappeared, replaced by ‘Administrative Assistant’.  While America is a great place to work and be successful for women, the world is just not there yet.

I absolutely think MNCs should be able to decide whether or not women belong in certain countries doing business.  There are many places in our world where women can be successful, it should not be seen as a slight to ones pride or person if a company feels you won’t be the right answer for the Japan account.  What it comes down to is just doing good business.