What do women executives want? According to the latest survey on gender and workplace diversity done by McKinsey & Company, to ensure that corporate culture supports – not hinders – the ability of women to reach top management, companies must address mind-sets and develop a more inclusive, holistic diversity agenda.
“Female executives are ambitious and sure of their own abilities to become top managers, though they are much less confident that their companies’ cultures can support their rise”.
Since 2007, McKinsey has explored the role women play in the global workplace, their experiences and impact in senior-executive roles, and the performance benefits that companies gain from gender diversity.
“According to our previous surveys on the topic and our 2012 analysis of more than 230 European companies, many organizations are implementing measures to increase gender diversity within their management teams. Indeed, majorities of executives have said in earlier research that their companies had implemented at least one measure to recruit, retain, promote, and develop women – yet few companies have seen notable improvements as a result. The 2013 results confirm that, beyond specific actions, culture has a critical role to play in either supporting or hindering efforts to advance diversity.
The responses suggest that mind-sets and company culture are significant in affecting women’s confidence to achieve their career goals; they also highlight the particular aspects of corporate culture that make it most difficult for women to reach the top. Yet there is still a notable gap in how men and women regard the gender-diversity problem. Men are much more likely than women to disagree that female executives face more difficulties in reaching top management, and men see less value in the diversity initiatives that can correct the gender imbalance”.
Read the survey
For more on this research, download the full report “Women Matter 2013”
Gender diversity in top management: Moving corporate culture, moving boundaries