The Cause of Women’s Lack of Progress
Traditionally organisations are designed for men. Initially, as they were based on military systems, next as they were further shaped by management experience and research in organisations mostly populated by men.
However, nowadays 50% of our workforce are women and some of the systems, culture and leadership tools designed for men may not work as well for most women. This may well explain why women do not progress as fast as men, and leave organisations in much greater numbers than men.
Understand the Unique Value of Men and Women
At my talks and training programmes I make clear what Gender Intelligence is. It is the process of gaining an awareness and understanding of the differences between men and women. Once people know, they can learn about the differences and apply them. Being aware of difference is useful when leading a team, building a relationship, selling a product or service, recruiting and talent management.
Gender Intelligence is not about assuming we’re all alike and asking everyone to be aware of prejudices. It’s not about creating all kinds of exceptions for women. It’s also not about asking women to adapt – giving them extra training and coaching – and become less authentic to themselves, just to succeed.
Gender Intelligence is about understanding the unique value men and women bring to the table. It’s about understanding how we are different and applying that knowledge to how we interact with each other, for instance in the workplace. It’s about discovering the authentic value that lies within each of us, and leveraging those differences to achieve greater success, together.
The Power of Difference
Gender Intelligence can make a real difference in organisations. W2O Consulting & Training can help you to implement and sustain a gender intelligent workplace, a place that harnesses the power of both men and women to create real business success.
W2O Consulting & Training helps you, your management and staff understand how women are different and what is required to build an organisation that works for men and women. And of course we start be helping you build and understand the business case for Gender Balance.
More information on Gender Intelligence
Fixing The Women by Rebecca Knight in the Financial Times April 2012 – Ms. Knight illustrates why and how IBM, American Express and Ernst & Young are implementing Gender Intelligence.
The key of BofAs success: More Women at the Top, Forbes, June 2011, Sylvia Ann Hewlett shows how Bank of America implements Gender Balance, and how women’s focus on team outcomes and asking questions complements men’s focus on winning.
Barbara Annis – A US-based thought leader on Gender Intelligence, she lectures and consults on the topic. Her book ‘Please Work With Me’ is a great resource. Her website offers good video’s and blogs on the topic.
Avivah Wittenberg-Cox – CEO of the Consultancy 20-first believes creating Gender Balance is not about fixing the women but about fixing organisations. Her books: ‘Why Women Mean Business’ and: ’How Women Mean Business’ are a very good guide for making the business case for gender balance and implementing it.