Women in the Workplace, 2019

Women in the Workplace, 2019

by Felicity Menzies

McKinsey’s 2019 Women in the Workplace report is a must-read for employers who are struggling to shift the dial on gender balance. It explains why progress in gender parity is moving at a glacial pace. The biggest obstacle women face on the path to senior leadership is at the first step up to manager. This early inequality has a long-term impact on the talent pipeline. Since men significantly outnumber women at the manager level, there are significantly fewer women to hire or promote to senior managers. The number of women decreases at every subsequent level. So even as hiring and promotion rates improve for women at senior levels, women as a whole can never catch up. This research is groundbreaking because, for many companies, diversity efforts in hiring and promotions are focused at senior levels, but the report suggests that companies need to apply the same rigour to addressing the broken rung. Fixing it will set off a positive chain reaction across the entire pipeline. To fix the broken rung to ultimately drive gender parity, McKinsey proposes five steps:

  •      Set a goal for getting more women into first-level management
  •      Require diverse slates for hiring and promotions
  •      Put evaluators through unconscious bias training
  •      Establish clear evaluation criteria
  •      Put more women in line for the step up to manager

Download the report here.

Felicity Menzies is CEO and Principal Consultant at Include-Empower.Com, a diversity and inclusion consultancy with expertise in inclusive leadership, unconscious bias, cultural intelligence and inclusion, gender equity, empowering diverse talent. Felicity is an accredited facilitator with the Cultural Intelligence Centre and the author of A World of Difference. Felicity has over 15 years of experience working with and managing diverse workforces in blue chip companies and is a Fellow of Chartered Accountants of Australia and New Zealand. Felicity also holds a Bachelor of Commerce and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology.