Most business leaders support diversity and inclusion efforts. But while women have made great gains in the overall workforce, their representation in leadership roles continues to lag.
The World Economic Forum recently predicted it will take another century to close the gap, based on the results of its most recent Gender Gap Index. Not only are too few women in leadership roles, but too many are in jobs that are being automated away.
At Oliver Wyman, we strive to accelerate the race to gender parity. In 2019, we analyzed the profiles of 15,000 executives and conducted interviews with more than 500 senior leaders across dozens of industries and countries. We found even in industries such as healthcare and procurement, in which women make most of the purchasing decisions, females are few and far between in leadership ranks.
A lack of gender balance at the top harms not only companies’ internal cultures but also their bottom lines, because firms are overlooking the needs of women as customers. For example, we estimate the financial services industry misses out on at least $700 billion in possible revenue opportunities every year because women are underserved.
In this collection of articles, we share the main findings from our research, including suggestions from senior business leaders for how companies can remedy leadership gender imbalances.
We hope you will find our ideas helpful and we look forward to hearing your perspective. Please join us in encouraging diversity and inclusion.