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Newsbrief: Advancing Women & Inclusion

April 21, 2015

This is the first installment in our new “Newsbrief” series that’s specifically designed to call attention to the news and research that will help you be a better leader. Advancing Women and Inclusion is the focus this time, but all of our practice areas will be covered in future posts.–Ed.

1. The recent Mercer report titled When Women Thrive, Businesses Thrive makes a powerful business case for gender diversity in the workplace. The 50-page report is based on data collected from organizations in over 28 countries and is packed with useful insights.

This is important because: “Companies with the strongest record of promoting women to the executive suite…outperformed industry medians with overall profits 34% higher when calculated for revenue, 18% higher in terms of assets and 69% higher in regard to equity.” (Pepperdine University)

2. Forbes contributor Bruce Kasanoff writes in his recent article Women: If You’re Competent, It’s Time To Be Confident: “…Here’s the problem: in the senior management ranks of most organizations, men significantly outnumber women. Although more women than men assume entry-level positions in Fortune 500 companies, Catalyst reports that women currently hold just 5 percent of Fortune 500 CEO positions and 4.9 percent of Fortune 1000 CEO positions. The New York Times reported that women make up only 16 percent of directors at Fortune 500 companies and 10 percent of chief financial officers at S&P 500 companies.

This is important because: It implies that senior leaders perceive that they perpetually confront the same problem… they can’t find women who are both confident and competent. Is this true? Are the mostly male leaders biased against women?

3. Procter & Gamble was announced as the 2015 recipient of the Catalyst Award, honoring exceptional and innovative initiatives that expand opportunities for women and business globally. The company’s global diversity platform, Everyone Valued, Everyone Included, Everyone Performing at Their Peak, was recognized for supporting the development of diverse talent throughout P&G, including women at all levels, across all regions, through wide-ranging learning and career development programs.

P&G’s support for women in the Arabian Peninsula was also highlighted, particularly the company’s efforts to promote female employment in Saudi Arabia. P&G was the first consumer packaged goods company to attain a license to employ women in the kingdom. Today, women represent 15% of P&G’s Saudi management, and they receive full benefits and career opportunities in the same work environment as their male counterparts.

This is important because: P&G is setting a great example of leading organizational change internationally as well as increasing P&G’s inclusive leadership efforts. 

Have you been impacted/inspired/outraged by a recent news story? Chances are we have too. Please share it with us below.

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