Multinational Director reveals why motherhood NEVER held her back

Multinational Director reveals why motherhood NEVER held her back

Chan May Wah, a Director at multinational recruitment firm Michael Page, has, almost, seen it all.

She’s enjoyed an international career, leading teams in recruitment and sales before working her way up from Consultant to Director, where she oversees HR, Marketing, Digital and Sales.

Yet, Wah was not handed her position lightly: she was previously employed at McDonalds, scrubbed toilets, cooked burgers, knocked on doors to make sales as well as leading various teams.

Wah is also a mother and a wife, but does not think that being family-minded has held her back.

Speaking to the Malay Mail, she said: “When I became pregnant last year, my boss told me that he had plans for me when I got back to work.

“That showed me that instead of thinking of replacing me with someone else, he chose me... when I was six months pregnant and about to go on maternity leave.”

Yet, Wah does not think discrimination in her industry is finished: by proxy of clients specifying what kind of person they want in the role.

“There are many discriminations when employing new people. Employers ― not all of them though ― want employees from a specific age group, gender and even size. These are already a form of discrimination.”

The recruitment industry is often a go-to target when workplace diversity is scrutinized – as recruitment firms do the hiring.

Top universities and top companies, including PwC have slammed recruiters for perceived failings on diverse hires. Wah’s comments indicate that this might not fair.

She continued: “In Michael Page, more than half of the leaders are women. I am not saying women are better but what I would like to highlight is the bosses here give emphasis to women to excel in their careers.

That said, Wah offers some telling advice for women wanting to fight their way to the top of recruitment pile: “My advice to women out there is not to be afraid. You cannot find the best time for everything. You won't be able to give your 100 per cent to everything. You might feel that you are not giving your best at work and at home, but don't worry.

“Do your best. There will always be haters and so what if you fail, you are still one step forward.”

Last year, PageGroup, which Michael Page works under, posted an 11.7% rise in their profits.

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