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By bringing women to the forefront are we leaving men behind?

Rebecca Hourston, Women's Leadership Coach and Managing Director - Talking Talent

It is no news to anyone that there are not enough women at the top. The lack of female leaders is something that has been written about and reported upon for many years. But what we really need to be talking about is a solution.

It has been proven that companies with three or more women in senior management functions deliver 10% better return on equity, achieve 16% higher return on sales and 26% higher return on invested capital. Investing in female talent means more efficiency, higher engagement and a strong return on investment, not to mention providing an edge when it comes to attracting and retaining top talent and protecting your pipeline. 

So, what’s the problem with female leadership coaching?
It’s mainly an issue of perception. A worry that investing in women might mean excluding men and promoting positive discrimination – by bringing women to the forefront are we leaving men behind? But the kickback to promoting women is predominantly fuelled by a fear of upsetting men. 

The real problem isn’t about gender priority or even promoting equality, it’s about identifying misconceptions and clarifying the key benefits to female-centric leadership, for both the individuals in your organisation and your company as a whole. 

The Diversity Paradox
I do not believe in taking men out of the picture, but putting emphasis on women to get them into the picture in the first place.

It is not about separating the sexes, but temporarily removing men so that the women in your company can have an authentic and in-depth, focused learning experience before being reintegrated with their new knowledge that will positively impact the organisation as a whole. 

What About the Benefits?
Why invest in female-centric leadership? Here are just a few of the reasons:

  • Shared experiences that enable women to succeed 

Having a safe space where women can come together to share drives the important conversations that includes shared experiences and a sense of solidarity.

  • Bespoke coaching addressing key issues

 Men and women have fundamentally different issues and putting them all in the same boat means that the exercises are not as tailored and the outcome is not as effective. 

  • Confidence as a key topic  

Women are more affected by confidence issues than their male peers with confidence a priority issue to be addressed and improved.  

  • Start with women but welcome workplace minorities 

Starting with female leadership provides a door to diversity, improving the sense of belonging, acceptance and progression of other workplace minorities. 

  • Women at the top improves the bottom line 

An impressive ROI that includes above-average profitability and addressing intra-personal challenges, improving your financial results but also your workforce. 

  • Be the best, attract the best

Female-specific leadership programmes offer an opportunity for employers to show how they are willing to invest in women in their organisation. This creates loyalty and belief as well as acting as a beacon for brilliance within the industry. 

  • Increased Innovation and an Entrepreneurial Edge

Innovation is six times higher in companies where men and women are treated equally, proving that equality really does give you the edge and authentic diversity makes a genuine difference. 

In essence, better inclusivity equals an impressive business impact. It helps your women to grow, improve and increase confidence whilst improving company profit, innovation and reputation. 

Investing in women-centric leadership coaching is not simply ticking a box but a real solution that means authentic transformation and culture change, investing in your people and protecting the pipeline. If you put in place a plan of action to nurture, engage, enhance and invest in your female talent, you’ll discover it’s not about a battle of the sexes but temporarily segregating specialist areas within the company to capitalise on micro-coaching opportunities that will strengthen the whole. 

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