empirical evidence that gender parity in the workplace matters
Since the early 1960s, business leaders have argued that expanding opportunities for women in the workplace would yield positive net results. Although it’s been a long time battle, statistics show that women have not fared as well as their male counterparts in the business and technology sectors. The gender pay gap and women’s employment statistics in the fields are enough proof of that.
Things are slowly changing, however, as companies have grown to learn that including women in business is a trend that should be growing – especially now that there is indisputable evidence proving that women make a huge difference in the workplace.
A recent report by The Anita Borg Institute for Women and Technology, a non-profit that seeks to help women advance in the technology sector, painstakingly details the difference women make in the workforce. The report, which spanned a variety of industries, highlights various instances in which women have made a difference in their field. Key findings include:
- An economist noted that teams that included at least one female employee had a higher IQ collectively than teams who only included male staff.
- Fortune 500 companies with at least three female staff members saw a significant return of investment, including capital gains, significant return on sales, and equity increase.
- Turnover rates were much lower for companies with diverse staff.
- Studies from 17 different countries confirmed that having a diverse team with a larger number of women makes all team members feel psychologically secure, improves team morale and efficiency, and promotes creativity.
- Diverse companies generally have a better reputation and are more easily able to attract more qualified candidates, which are in high demand.
The results of these studies are by no means surprising, as it’s been proven time and time again that diversity and inclusion lead to more innovative products and boosts morale for all team members.
‘[With] more diverse team chemistry, you get more perspectives with a larger variety of options to consider, and more chances of having innovative solutions proposed,’ says Jeanne Hultquist, who authored the study. That diversity begins by simply including more women in business making decisions.
In a global economy where competition is fierce, businesses are increasingly under pressure to attract and retain talent in order to stay afloat. Companies with diverse teams have reaped the benefits of having the largest possible talent pool, creating an environment where men and women can work in sync in order to solve complex problems and innovate together.
While there is certainly a long way to go in order to achieve parity in traditionally male dominated industries, there’s significant evidence that proves that organisations that focus attracting and retaining female employees will continue to reap the benefits of women’s innovation.