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Just Hitting The Numbers Is A Lose-Lose

So we’ve read the overwhelming evidence that clearly shows the numerous benefits of having #WomenInManagement.

Meanwhile, various stakeholders are clamouring for change. Customers, shareholders, government entities and employees want to see better representation of women in leadership roles, and brands face damage to their #Reputation, #Sales and #Profit if they do not respond appropriately.

However, simply ‘parachuting’ women into positions to appease stakeholders and publish numbers on websites is not the answer. To start the process of attracting and retaining top female talent, businesses should look into the #RootCause of their demographic imbalance;

- of their staff development pipeline,

- how they hire and promote,

- establishing inclusive workplace cultures with policies that support a diverse workforce,

- offering efficient performance reward systems that provide equal pay for work of equivalent difficulty.

To do this and fully understand the issues, companies must first identify where to focus, by measuring and evaluating internally to address the ‘low hanging fruit’ of where to make the greatest impact quickly, to be seen to be making meaningful change and establish a baseline against which to measure improvements.

We know it’s the right thing to do, and the compelling research overwhelmingly shows that women in leadership are good for business. But culture change takes time and has to be made with authenticity if it’s to be lasting and meaningful and to prevent excellent staff from becoming disillusioned and leaving and spreading damaging gossip. It’s no good hitting the figures just to keep key stakeholders happy without the correct foundations to keep the women there.

There is little doubt that women really do make a difference in management, and it’s time to start making a dent in those statistics we keep reading about - but with authenticity to avoid a negative impact on the bottom line.

What would you do first?


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