BBC2′s Dragons’ Den has drummed up some marvellous publicity with its new female dragon Hilary Devey, multi-millionaire owner of a freight distribution company.
While making her millions herself, she claims in a Telegraph interview that women just aren’t genetically cut out for top roles – but men are. She says she has sacrificed family life for her career, as women can’t have it both ways (especially not in the ‘man’s world in which she operates).
Viewing figures for the new Dragons Den series have apparently been higher than usual – though whether that’s down to the new Dragon I imagine will be analysed in due course. And I’ll be curious to see whether, in the course of the programme, she chooses to invest in other female entrepreneurs.
In the meantime, figures that don’t back up what Ms Devey contends is that British men have increased the amount of time they spend on domestic chores by 60% over the past 30 years – suggesting that men are beginning to share the burden of housework that has traditionally fallen to women. There’s still some way to go, though. While men may help with homework and cooking, they’re still not brilliant at doing the washing.
But, for now, perhaps women are still giving them the choice and picking up the slack.