Advantages of Having Women in Leadership
Organisations recognise the importance of decreasing the gender equality gap and including more women in leadership. However, we are still very far from the ideal scenario. According to IBM, only 18% of working women occupy top leadership positions. Therefore, it is crucial to address this issue. Merit and recognition should not have a gender.
Companies must implement policies and work on existing ones to make them more inclusive. They need to develop the hiring and promoting processes to include more women in the workforce and in powerful positions. Sensitising and educating the HR department and recruiters about this situation is crucial as they are part of the response to this issue.
Also, it is fundamental that organisations create strategies to empower women at work by, for example, developing mentorship programmes and workshops to support female workers, make them feel more confident and improve their leadership skills. The Namely Diversity Report from 2018 showed that women are under-recognised by companies and men receive more promotions and pay rises than female co-workers.
Men, being the majority in leadership positions, have an added responsibility in finding solutions to include women in C-suite positions. They have to recognise the discrepancy between men and women at work. In recent research, IBM asked men, “Imagine you had been born the opposite gender. Would your career have been different?”. Two-thirds of respondents said their careers would have been no different. On the other hand, and contradictorily, man workers also stated that there was discrimination against women in companies.
According to a 2019 study from the International Labour Organization, Organisations that implement gender equality policies are likely to have more women in management and CEO positions. Therefore, showing that corporate policies help solve these problems.
Having women in leadership is positive, not only for companies but also for the economy. Gender balanced boardrooms are likely to improve business incomes by 20%, as reported by the International Labour Organization. Companies that promote women’s leadership are more likely to attract and retain top talented candidates. Women in leadership positions bring diverse thinking and experiences.
Another issue that needs to be addressed is the gender pay gap in the business world. Even if it decreased in recent years, according to the World Economic Forum, only in 202 years women will gain the same salary as men. The equality between men and women at work will only be achieved in 108 years, and it has not been reached by any country yet. As Anna-Karin Jatfors, the regional director for UN Women, said: “Gender inequality is the reality around the world, and we’re seeing that in all aspects of women’s lives,”.
- To See More Women in Leadership Roles, Here’s What Needs to Happen, May 2019, Entrepreneur
- Women, leadership, and the priority paradox, 2019, IBM
- How To Increase Female Leadership In Your Company, August 2018, Forbes
- It Could Take 202 Years for Women to Earn as Much as Men, December 2018, TIME