Diversity Woman Magazine

FAL 2018

Leadership and Executive Development for women of all races, cultures and backgrounds

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46 D I V E R S I T Y W O M A N Fa l l 2 0 1 8 d i v e r s i t y w o m a n . c o m Donald. "erefore, if you tie to manag- ers' compensation review how many women they advanced into leadership positions, as well as how frequently they gave women leadership training and op- portunities, you will see change." Be intentional Increasing the number of diverse employ- ees within an organization by promoting qualified diverse candidates through the I f women are underrepresented in the upper echelons of Corporate America, they are not going to be well represented on corporate boards. According to Catalyst, women hold only 21 percent of S&P 500 board seats, and women of color hold less than 4 percent of Fortune 500 board seats. To complement its CEO Champions For Change initiative, Catalyst launched Women On Board. The program's objective is to pair board- ready candidates with CEOs and board chairs who help them prepare and get into a position to earn a board seat. To date, Women On Board has led to more than 167 board appointments, with approximately 63 percent of alumni having earned seats on corporate boards. According to Meesha Rosa, senior director of Catalyst's Corporate Board Services and head of Women On Board, the program is a game changer for both these exceptional board candidates and the compa- nies they serve. "Having a diverse board with women, including women of color, enhances problem solving, drives innovation, provides a competitive edge only the full talent pool can bring, and sets companies up to win in the market of the future," she says. "Our country is getting more and more diverse." According to the US Census Bureau, by 2060 women of color will be the majority of women in the United States, but as of 2016, they represented only 3.8 percent of Fortune 500 board seats. Can any board afford to ignore the majority? Women and corporate boards Companies with inclusive talent practices generate up to 30 percent higher revenue per employee. CatalyticConvertor ranks doesn't happen on its own. A compa- ny needs to set goals and act with intention. "We have 10 brand presidents at Car- nival and four are women," says Donald. "I'm constantly trying to engineer diver- sity. Take, for example, our procurement officer, who is a minority woman. I basi- cally forced my team to keep trying un- til they found a qualified woman to fill this position. We ended up with a woman from Macau who happens to be a Filipina and is a digital marketing expert. So I hired a procurement officer with incredible digi- tal marketing expertise and a woman of color at the same time." But what do you do when your em- ployees are resistant to change and deep- er recruiting is called for to find greater diversity? According to Donald, a clear explanation needs to come from the top. "In my experience, it's not so much that people are resistant—it's just that they don't know how to be intentional," he says. "You have to change the criteria and say, 'I'm looking for someone who can really make a meaningful contribu- tion, and I am looking for someone who is diverse.' When the CEO is very clear, people will understand." e beauty is that promoting women's advancement increases a company's bot- tom line, say Engelbert and Donald. Ac- cording to the 2017 Deloitte Global Hu- man Capital Trend Reports, companies with inclusive talent practices in hiring, promotion, development, leadership, and team management generate up to 30 percent higher revenue per employee and greater profitability than their com- petitors. Data points like this are one reason Catalyst found such enthusiastic buy-in when it launched CEO Champions For Change. Personal experience is another. "It still surprises me that people talk about me as the first female CEO of a US Big Four professional services firm," says Engelbert. "I knew it was a big deal to me personally, but I underestimated the broad- er reaction. It's time that having female leaders is the norm, not a novelty. at means bolstering what we're doing within our organizations—such as mentoring and sponsorship initiatives—and also looking beyond our four walls. We need to look at strengthening the talent pipeline by focus- ing on the foundational elements. ere are too many talented women, with signifi- cant potential and too much to offer, for us to continue on this same path." DW

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