How We Work

Asian women in the workplace is the least likely group to be seen and promoted as leaders and also least served by our firm’s diversity and inclusion efforts.

Less than 1% of us are promoted to executive leadership.

We face the double-bind, the bamboo and glass ceilings, compared to Black and White women. We need sponsors and defenders.

Asian Women at Work

Among adult women, the Asian women workforce participation rate is 58.8%, the second highest behind Black women. As of Jan 2023, 5.0 million of us are employed, rebounding from a low of 3.8 million from May 2020 during the pandemic. We are highly varied in occupation, education and employment rate by ethnicity.

We are least perceived as leadership potential even when high-performing or when assertive due to perceived stereotypes.

More Asian women are becoming entrepreneurs. There are 1 million Asian women-owned businesses in the U.S., 1 out of 2 Asian women-owned business was started by a Gen Xer.

Our Pay is Not Equal

We make $0.80 for every dollar that a White male makes on average. If working full-time, we make $0.92 for every dollar that our White male counterpart makes. We make even less compared to Asian males. We make $0.79 for every dollar that our Asian male counterpart makes. There is a wide disparity in pay gap by sub-racial group.

Looking at educational attainment, 55% of Asian women have at least a Bachelors degree vs. 38% of White men. Those of us with a bachelor’s degree are paid 22% less than our White male counterpart, while those of us with an advanced degree are paid 14% less.

Go deeper: Compare the wage gap by race and occupation, Asian women wage gap by sub-group, Asian women wage gap by U.S. State