Last year’s Shriver Report (which I discussed here), noted the transformations that have taken place regarding women’s participation in the workforce. This is reinforced in a recent article in The Economist, which suggests that the “rich world’s quiet revolution” is written in the words, voices and actions of economically empowered women.
Just a generation ago, women were largely confined to repetitive, menial jobs. They were routinely subjected to casual sexism and were expected to abandon their careers when they married and had children. Today they are running some of the organisations that once treated them as second-class citizens.
However, the number of women who are actually running or leading these organizations are few and far between. Despite a resounding correlation between business performance and the number of women holding management and leadership positions, women remain substantially under-represented in such roles – with only 2% of the top jobs in the US and 5% in the UK being filled by women.
Orit Gadiesh and Julie Coffman wonder if there is something more systemic to this situation and are running a survey to investigate. You can participate in this survey here – with the results being presented at this year’s World Economic Forum at the end of January 2010.
Nina Nets It Out: In a time where expertise and experience is prized – where talent is scarce and will continue to be so, organizations with a pool of talented women will likely outperform their competitors. It’s time that we understand and begin to grow this vital two percent.