International Women’s Day

March 8th marks international women’s day, an annual celebration to commemorate women’s strength, achievements and legacies. The theme of this year’s celebrations is Balance for Better, promoting gender balance and equality across the world and different industries. While diversity and inclusion initiatives are top priorities in most organisations these days there still remains a significant gender gap at C-level with less than 5% of CEO positions in Europe and the US held by women.

Top level female representation is not merely a question of ethics but rather about business success. Research demonstrates that organisations with diverse leadership teams outperform those that do not. In fact one study conducted by Boston Consulting Group found that organisations with leadership diversity generate up to 19% more revenue.

Fostering an environment where everyone can achieve their full potential is no easy feat however there are practices which help women and men progress in their career, while maintaining a balanced life.

  1. Bias training – unconscious bias exists in many forms within the workplace. Providing bias training will help raise awareness of the issue and ensure adequate measures are in place to help overcome the challenge.
  2. Change the long term hours norm – in a recent article about resilience training I touched on the mounting evidence that long days should become a thing of the past. Changing the attitude toward long days will open up greater opportunity for career driven parents and provide better work life balance for mothers and fathers.
  3. Offer paid paternity leave… and enforce it – Gender equality works both ways. Offering and enforcing paid paternity leave encourages better work life integration for male employees. It also helps to close the gap which is often opened when mothers take time off to rear children.  
  4. Focus on inclusive leadership programmes and sponsorship – having a diverse pipeline is half the battle. Encourage female participation in leadership development programmes and ensure that the right people are sponsoring female candidates (sponsors with influence).  
  5. Celebrate female achievements – share the stories and experiences of your female high fliers to inspire others. Celebrate their journey and achievements and leverage their role model image to attract new female candidates to aspire to C-level.

Increasingly, employees are expecting organisations to have truly diverse and inclusive cultures. As the war for talent heightens those who are slow to change will lose.

Author: Sara Glynn, Marketing & Customer Success Manager@ Wrkit

References:

https://www.internationalwomensday.com/
https://www.ft.com/content/1090105c-fb7b-11e8-aebf-99e208d3e521
https://www.bcg.com/en-us/publications/2018/how-diverse-leadership-teams-boost-innovation.aspx
https://wrkit.com/blog/2019/02/13/resilience-training-reducing-stress-or-masking-the-problem/
https://hbr.org/2007/09/women-and-the-labyrinth-of-leadership
https://www2.deloitte.com/content/dam/Deloitte/us/Documents/human-capital/hc-2017-global-human-capital-trends-us.pdf
https://hbr.org/2010/09/why-men-still-get-more-promotions-than-women

Employee learning: An investment worth making

The value to the employer

According to Bersin by Deloitte “companies with high performing learning environments rank in the top for employee engagement”. It’s not surprising then that in this year’s 2017 Deloitte ‘Human Capital Trends’ report employee learning moved up into second place as a concern for employers world-wide.

A new generation of workforce has brought with it new expectations. The concept of a career has changed and the influence of technology is driving organisations towards flexible, anytime learning. Changing demands are expelling historic myths about L&D investment while employee learning opportunities are increasingly contributing towards a strong employer value proposition.

Massive open online courses

In their 2016 report Deloitte sited massive open online courses (MOOCs) as an increasingly prominent learning tool being provided by employers. This type of learning environment helps to meet the demands of a millennial workforce; on the go learning that will “allow employees to build skills quickly, easily, and on their own terms”.

MOOC’s offer more to the employee and employer than simply improving professional skill-sets. The diversity in the course content also allows employees to develop their personal interests, enhancing the emotional connection between employer and employee and boosting overall engagement.

MOOC’s are usually a very cost effective way of providing employee learning opportunities, and accreditations can come from hundreds of leading universities. They are the most convenient way for employees to balance work, life and learning. Don’t be fooled into thinking a busy workforce will have no time for learning, if companies provide the correct tools learning will seamlessly integrate into the lives of their workforces.

Wrkit flexible learning solutions

Get in touch to find out about our flexible learning solutions – info@wrkit.com

Author – Sara Glynn, Marketing Executive, Wrkit.