MORE than 80 per cent of west country businesswomen say work/life balance is their biggest priority, while 22 per cent believe a glass ceiling is impeding their career.
These are among the top-line findings of more than 500 respondents to the South West of England Women in Business survey organised by Bishop Fleming.
A total of 53 per cent of respondents rejected the idea of mandatory targets for women in the boardroom, while 35 per cent said mentoring was the best way to support their career or business ambitions.
Meanwhile, 33 per cent identified their need for networking with like-minded women.
Bishop Fleming director Fleur Lewis said: "Despite recent debate, it is interesting the majority of respondents did not think mandatory targets should be set by government for 'token women' in the boardroom: they were much more interested in women achieving their potential on merit and not to meet government diversity targets.
"One of the most thought-provoking statistics from our respondents, for both self employed and employed women, was career ambitions would be better boosted by access to mentoring (35 per cent) and networking with like-minded people (33 per cent)."
Bishop Fleming has promoted two senior people to its partnership.
Fleur Lewis, who joined the company from Ernst & Young as director of audit, has been made a partner, based in the firm's Exeter office while Hazel Tucker, who joined the firm in 2005, has been promoted to business services partner at the Torquay office from her role as director of business services at the Exeter office.