Gender diversity in businesses has been advocated for a while globally. So when the Women in Business 2021 report reckons that India is ranked 3rd in the world for women working in senior leadership roles, it can be said that the attitude towards the women workforce is definitely improving.
According to the findings of the report, India ranks ahead with 39% as compared to the global average of 31% for key leadership positions held by working women.
Globally, businesses with at least one woman in the senior management role increased to 90%, the same stands at 98% in India.
In fact, 47% of mid-market businesses in India now have women CEOs compared with 26% globally.
Let’s explore how this diverse dream is fast becoming a reality:
COVID-19 impacting the nature of workforce
The infamous pandemic compelled the businesses to diversify their workforce especially in India. The analysis of the report states that 59% of Indian women were helped with an environment to thrive as compared to 43% globally. Similarly 59% of Indian businesses started promoting work life balance and 52% started adapting to new developments to change the environment which are the biggest priorities for women. In comparison, the global numbers are 45% and 38% respectively.
88% respondents in India believe that new working practices will benefit women’s career trajectories in the long term compared with 69% globally.
Indian organizations stepping up to initiate Gender Balance
According to the report, Indian businesses have taken numerous initiatives to promote gender balance. The top ones include ensuring equal opportunities, creating inclusive culture, rewards for completing senior management targets and providing mentorship.
Sharing her views on the report findings, Pallavi Bakhru, Partner, Grant Thornton Bharat, said: “Under the challenging circumstances of 2020, the boundaries between work and home have blurred. In this scenario, it is good to see action being taken by businesses to ensure employee engagement and inclusion. ”
The deeper analysis of the survey also states that 82% of Indian mid-market businesses are actively working on their gender balance.
Evolving leadership roles of women in India
In comparison to above mentioned India figures, 26% of global businesses now have a female CEO; followed by 36% CFOs and 22% COOs. The numbers show the alacrity Indian businesses have shown in actively encouraging working women.
The post quarantine climate has been an eye opener for the businesses. The top brass has realised that they need to access the full potential of their workforce to be a winner.
‘Innovative’, ‘adaptive to change’ and ‘courageous to take risks’ are emerging as the top leadership traits in 2021.
These figures serve as a paramount encouragement to all the working women and reinforce the idea that with more women taking on leadership roles and diversity on board, businesses will open new opportunities for growth for women.