Australian companies need to be doing more to close the gender pay gap as a means of increasing competitiveness and productivity
I'm currently touring Australia for the August series of our Ascend development days, however before I left I attended a debate hosted by The Sydney Institute between David Gonski, Chairman of the ASX and Elizabeth Broderick, Sexual Discrimination Commissioner on the issue of quotas and mandatory targets to increase the number of women on boards. Regardless of which side of the fence you sit on, the good news is that the ASX gender diversity guidelines seem to be having an effect - with Gonksi announcing the number of women on boards in ASX200 companies has finally shifted back to a positive trend for the first time in almost four years.
There is a lot of election conversations happening everywhere, and I was forwarded this video from Get Up, that opens with Tony Abbot’s quote: "I think it would be folly to expect that women will ever dominate or even approach equal representation in a large number of areas simply because their aptitudes, abilities and interests are different for physiological reasons" – quoted from Four Corners, 15/03/10, quoted from a piece he wrote on feminism, back in his undergraduate days.
Diversity and Inclusion Awards 2010 now open – nominate your workplace for supporting its women. Nominations closing August 23rd
Does your company recognise the diversity benefits of having women in leadership roles, and have the business smarts to develop programs now ahead of the competition to fully capitalise on these and put themselves ahead? Then make sure your work is recognised and apply for a Diversity and Inclusion Award from Diversity@Work.
The gender pay gap is COSTING Australia BILLIONS in lost output: why fixing the gender pay gap in your business is the smart move
The stats don’t lie – despite our best intentions, be they real or wishful women still aren’t getting paid the same as their male counterparts. Put bluntly, it means women are not getting paid fairly. Sharryn Jackson MP (member for Hasluck, WA) is promoting a report that outlines why the pay gap is a huge cost to the economy, and is “pleased that business has acknowledged the link between productivity and pay equity." Some important stats from the article include: Read More
Last week I met with a long-time mentor of mine who’s definitely a Good Guy. Tony and I met on a consulting project, he was on the client side and I was external but still he became a mentor. I went on to take a number of roles in that organisation and over the years we’ve stayed in touch sporadically. It’s one of those informal mentoring arrangements where I’d call on him for help with specific issues as they arose.
It was a welcome surprise when his text message popped up on my iPhone a couple of weeks back, suggesting that we meet. This time though, the tables had turned and it was Tony who was seeking advice. This was a reverse mentoring session: we were meeting so Tony could ask my advice on gender diversity and the approach he should take in his company since he’d been appointed to his company’s Diversity Council.
To use Tony’s words, he didn’t know where to begin and I think this is so often the case with the Good Guys in business. They can see the problem, they see the impact its having on their teams and on the bottom line, and they want to get involved in fixing it. They often just don’t know how.
GREAT NEWS: sphinxx is a finalist in the Telstra Business Awards! How you can be (an even bigger part) of our celebrations
sphinxx has always been a group effort – harnessing the determination of women and employers to see more women in leadership roles, to close the diversity gap at executive and board levels. Our collaborative and pragmatic approach of bringing together senior women in business, and identifying experts who can advise on what women say they need to get the top jobs, has underpinned our growth and success. This practical, focused approach is being recognised at the Telstra Business Awards - the results of which we find out next week on July 9 (fingers crossed!).
I wish I could take all of our supporters with me to the presentation night, to give the audience a glimpse of the breadth and depth of fabulous female talent, support and voices out there… but there wouldn’t be a ballroom in Australia big enough to host you all.
So instead, I’d love you to go to this link where you can share your thoughts, congratulations or just the stories of how you are accessing sphinxx and what it means for you.
Your thoughts will be shown on the screen during the awards presentation, to a room full of business people. What better forum to celebrate advancing women in business? (and don’t forget to include your name and company – great profile building for you too!)
Is gender diversity stealing all the air from wider diversity issues? My take on a HR leaders blog, and the link between gender and wider diversity
I have recently read a really interesting article on the human resources leader blog by Angela Priestly that investigates if the increasing focus on gender diversity in business distracts attention from other diversity needs such as sexuality or cultural diversity.
She recognizes the improvement made in law firms in regards to gender diversity (although women still make up only 8% of executives and board members in top publically listed companies), and questions whether if “the focus on the number of women in senior positions within a company detract[s] from the wider issue of diversity?”
I think this is an important question, and we do know is that gender diversity is the key lead indicator to other aspects of diversity. I agree it’s definitely not the only issue, but it’s a great starting place and one that we must continue to push for. Especially because women make up 52% of the population, and include many cultural backgrounds and the full scope of sexual orientations - it’s hard enough for people from diverse cultural background or sexual orientations to progress their careers in some fields without also being discriminated against as a woman.
She also reports on the findings of a study that worked with 506 for-profit American companies, with findings that indicate that better diversity in all fields improves and encourages innovation, creativity and better customer service. Read More
Is Australia suffering from the “Stupid Curve”? New research and new name for how we're utilising our national talent
“The stupid curve” phenomenon (named by former Deloitte USA Chairman Mike Cook) that describes the curve you see in graphs that source 90% of their leaders from only 50% of their workforce. And Australia ranks behind peer countries in regards to number of women in senior executive roles… Read More