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Gender Balance in Business Leadership

Creating an environment of equality and collaboration in the workplace should be a priority. What if hiring more women for leadership roles encouraged a healthier company culture?

Men vs. Women in Business:

There has always been a strong male presence in business, especially in leadership roles. In the past, this was seen as the socially acceptable nature of business.

However, for many years women have fought long and hard for their place in the corporate world. About 87 percent of companies worldwide have a minimum of one woman in a management position, according to Catalyst data for 2019. According to the same research, the highest number of women in senior management positions was achieved last year. Women have made outstanding progress, but even today, there is still an imbalanced gender ratio in business. In 2019, men made up 71 per cent of those in management positions worldwide, according to Catalyst.

The gender gap is not as significant in Canada, as women make up 47.6 per cent of management positions, according to Statistics Canada ’s latest data from 2019. However, Statistics Canada says that men still make up 81.9 per cent of corporate board of directors positions and have a higher presence in several other areas of seniority as well.

Men vs. Women’s Work Ethic:

The gender balance in business leadership is still unusually low, especially due to the fact that research proves women have a higher work ethic than men. A study conducted by Hive states that women get more work completed on average compared to men.

Women are also given more work than men, according to Hive research. The reason for this is because of the type of work they are willing to do. Men and women both appreciate the same aspects of work, but they value them differently.

“Men valued pay, money, and benefits, as well as power, authority, and status significantly more than women did. Women valued the following significantly more than men did: friends and relationships; recognition and respect; communication; fairness and equity; teams and collaboration; family and home,” said Professor Michael Peterson in his study for Gender Medicine . In his research, Peterson depicted “what men and women value at work” and the “implications for workplace health”.

Personal vs. Collaborative Success:

Fixing the gender balance is not simply about making sure woman are in business for the sake of equality, though this is important. Putting more women in places of corporate influence is about creating a collaborative company culture.

Instead, of competing for power, position or status of individuals, the corporate world should embrace a cooperative and fair workplace that promotes growth. Most women understand and apply these healthy work practices far more than men. These qualities are what businesses and organizations look for in their employees, especially in company leadership.

So, why are women less represented in corporate leadership roles than their male counterparts? The answer to this question is not altogether clear. However, the answer is clear that if women influenced company culture more, organizations would thrive like never before. Coworkers would communicate more effectively. Employees would be encouraged and challenged to develop better work ethic. Overall company culture would be one of equality and collaboration.

The statistics are looking more positive, proving that women are making progress as leaders in the corporate world. Last year saw some of the highest numbers for female influence on business worldwide. Though this is true, progress is slow. According to the worldwide trends in business, it will take 20 years for women to reach equality in important management roles.

Knowing how men and women work is the key to creating a blended workforce that collaborates. This doesn’t mean either men or women are better in business leadership. Ultimately, the character of a person determines whether or not they are best suited for a role in leadership. Working towards a common goal no matter your gender, while respecting and communicating with team members, is how healthy company culture is cultivated. 


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