Hamilton Herald Masthead


Front Page - Friday, June 23, 2023

Choice ‘critical’ in supporting gender equality


Despite modest gains in representation over the past eight years, women – especially women of color – are still dramatically underrepresented in corporate America, says Jennifer Stanley, partner, McKinsey and Company.

Stanley discussed the reasons behind the highest attrition rates by women seen in years, as well as ways to promote the retention and advancement of women into leadership roles, during the Chattanooga Area Chamber of Commerce Diversify Summit at the Chattanooga Convention Center last week.

Stanley addressed concerns raised by a recent McKinsey and Co. study (www.mckinsey.com/featured-insights/diversity-and-inclusion/women-in-the-workplace), conducted in partnership with LeanIn.org.

Top takeaways:

• Assuming an equal number of men, women and women of color begin entry level roles, 100 of those men will be promoted into first-level management roles, compared to 87 women and only 82 women of color.

• New talent pipeline issues emerge as women leaders leave their companies.

• While women leaders are as likely to seek promotions, microaggressions arise at higher rates that undermine their authority.

• Women leaders look for companies with a commitment to employee well-being and diversity, equity and inclusion.

• Women who can choose to work in their preferred arrangements – whether remote or on-site – are less burned out, happier in their jobs and less likely to consider leaving companies.

• The option to work remotely is especially important to women.

• Manager expectations have increased over the past two years, with higher expectancy toward promoting diversity, equity and inclusion best practices.

Diversify is an annual summit in June aimed at promoting and providing information about diversity and inclusion among local business and community leaders.

McKinsey and Company is a global management consulting firm. Stanley leads McKinsey’s sales practice in North America.