I am not going to give you figures that show the situation, we already know them, nor messages calling for external action. I will focus on what all of us can do internally to create inclusive societies, where commemorative dates would not be needed. Utopian? Maybe, but I think it’s the most useful approach: to be part of the solution and not the problem. So, I’m going to highlight what women do very well in the business world.
Do you know what CEOs and human resources directors think about professional women? That we excel, especially, in multidisciplinary vision, order and rigor, work capacity, persistence and good use of intuition. And what are the enemies that we create, according to this same survey? Our lack of confidence, sometimes endemic; insolidarity among us (it hurts to say it, but sometimes exists) and conflict, when we don’t regulate ourselves well emotionally. (Source: Survey of EF Presidents and HR Directors, Alir 2018).
And us? What do we think of our contribution in the organizations and business world? We bring greater consensus and collaboration, greater impact on results, diverse attitude and perspective, and a great capacity to do the job well and, moreover, with fast results.
But what stereotypes are we fighting against? It is said that we are too emotional and “soft” to make difficult decisions, that we are not ambitious nor seek promotion, that we are more tactical and we focus more on execution… (Source: Audra Bohannon, Senior Partner Korn Ferry, Mckinsey and Harvard Business Review).
Finally, what does research say? That a diverse group outperforms a homogeneous group. That men and women show different leadership behaviors, but equally valuable and complementary. That is, greater organizational health is achieved, and, in short, greater “collective intelligence”.
Conclusion: there are many studies and research that support the great correlation between organizational health and its financial results. (Source: Iris Bohnet, Professor of Public Policy at the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard and McKinsey, “Women Matter” 2017).
With this qualitative data still in mind, my proposal for this March 8th and the next, is for professional men and women to be mirrors and support, with positive and rigorous actions, real inclusion at all levels.
I believe that it is time for us to put over differences aside and join the rest of humanity; to stop punishing ourselves seeking the ideal self; it’s time to help and support us even more and to value talent globally, in its most diverse sense. I think these are not times for mediocrity, but to bet on our dreams with the utmost generosity.