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Equality is great, but what are the real benefits of women in leadership?

by , 07 August 2013
I've a question for you. Do you think more women leaders will make a difference in your business?

Dear Reader,

A 2012 report by Credit Suisse shows that women in leadership increased business profits by 14%!

Equality is great, but what are the real benefits of women in leadership?

I'm a woman and I like to hear about women making it big in business, yet based on sheer numbers women still aren't up 'there' with the guys. This is despite overwhelming evidence of women-led companies who outperform those led by men. The McKinsey Report found that women led companies beat men led companies by 41% in return on equity and by 56% in operating results.

According to a study by Jack Zenger and John Folksman women are regarded better leaders by their peers. Here's a quote from their study '…at every level, more women were rated by their peers, their bosses, their direct reports, and their other associates as better overall leaders than their male counterparts — and the higher the level, the wider that gap grows.' So what is it about women that'll increase your profits?

Here are three reasons women are good for your business!

Three reasons why more women in leadership is good for your business
  1. Women often talented build better teams that their male peers. They're more liked and respected as managers; they tend to combine intuitive and logical thinking easier. They're also more aware of the impact of their actions and they think more accurately about the resources they'll need to reach their goals outcome. So look at the women in your workplace, do you know of any who fit these traits? Give them more responsibility, they may surprise you and do very well!
  2. Women have unique leadership skills. The HR role has long since been a 'woman's job' and for good reason too. Women know how to nurture and manage people. Your employees' productivity affects your bottom-line and with a woman at the helm, you'll be sure to increase your productivity.
  3. You still need to comply with the EE Act! There's no hiding from this. The DoL expects you to comply with the Employment Equity Act because gender is one of the 20 areas you could discriminate. For example if a woman is qualified for a job that's commonly done by a man, and she applies for it, you should still consider her for the job. Don't ignore her application because she's a woman. You'll risk R900, 000 in fines because you've discriminated against women.
If you need help to comply with the EE Act, the Complete Employment Equity Toolkit is a great place to start. It'll show you how to implement and EE Plan, how to form your own EE Committee and how to complete the forms you need to submit correctly. So if you need to comply with the EE Act or you need to boost your productivity and profits women are good for business!
Until next time,
Miriro Matema
Product Manager: Practical Guide to Human Resources Management
P.S. Your Employment Equity report is due on the 1 October 2013! Find out how to get it right the first time around…

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