The power of female leaders

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The power of female leaders

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The call for gender equality and the need to close the gender wage gap has been topical for decades. Strides have been made in empowering women to take on more positions of leadership and activate their own potential.

The need for a whole organisation approach to gender equality has never been greater than today. In fact, a recent McKinsey Global Institute report  found that $12 trillion could be added to global GDP by 2025 just by advancing women’s equality. Another study by the Peterson Institute and Ernst and Young (global auditing firm) found that 22 000 companies whose executive management was gender-diverse realised a six percent increase in corporate earnings. The research demonstrates that, while increasing the number of women directors and CEOs is important, growing the percentage of female leaders in the C-suite would likely benefit the company’s bottom line even more.

With the deep pool of untapped female leadership talent available, it is in the interest of Milpark Business School (MBS) to help women rise in their ranks. MBS is aiding the advancement of women leaders is by offering the Women in Leadership qualification both via Contact Learning and Distance Learning Online.

The qualification aims to equip women with the prerequisite skills to function effectively in the working world. MBS has recognised that women need to play an increasingly strategic role in business within South Africa and globally. Dr Jane Usher at MBS says: “We have designed this course to empower women to take the initiative and proactively manage their careers and to meaningfully improve the diversity of organisations throughout SA. The world of work is changing on a continual basis and a different type of leadership is required to lead effectively in this era.”

Here are some examples highlighting the value of diversity for your organisation:

1. More diverse problem-solving

A workforce represented by employees with similar views is comfortable because it is familiar and less inclined to be confrontational. The problem comes in when issues arise. If a process consistently fails or breaks and is met with a team that thinks fairly similarly, the possibilities of innovation and improvement decrease. Increased representation opens the door to diverse problem-solving because it fosters the interaction of different worldviews and approaches. Considerations that might have been overlooked or thought to be inconsequential to one group of people might carry significance for another. The more varied a workforce, the greater the opportunity for new approaches to optimising processes.

2. Increased organisational collaboration

The National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER) in the United States of America conducted a study recently which concluded that the US economy would be better off if men did more housework. NBER conducted another research exercise that found women lean towards team-based payment because they believe in the abilities of their teammates. Where men opted more for individual-based incentives, on average women held the belief that the people they were working with were competent and able.

The reason for increased financial performance is not certain, but the correlation between the monetary performance of a business and its female leadership remains evident. Find out more about the Women in Leadership online short course by visiting www.milpark.ac.za or by calling 0869990001. 

01 Feb 2018