Women Power in Africa – More Women CEOS than Global Average

 

(AFK INSIDER) In a recently released report titled,  “Women Matter Africa” Management consulting firm McKinsey & Company finds Africa has more women CEOS than the global average based on surveys conducted with 55 leading companies across the continent; interviews with 35 African women leaders; and analysis of the financial performance of 210 publicly-traded African businesses.

 

The reason that companies with more women directors earn better and perform better  than the industry average include: enhanced risk management; openness to new ideas and ways of doing things; improved collaboration and cooperation between stakeholders; and stronger ethics and consistency in making fair decisions.

 

Companies with greater gender diversity are also better equipped to understand the needs of female customers who directly influence 70-to-80 percent of global spending.

 

What companies can do to improve gender diversification

While Africa has more women in the executive committee, CEO and board roles than the global average there is still room for improvement.

 

What African companies should do to improve gender balance?

Some ways could be to make gender diversity a top board and CEO priority. Progress needs to be monitored and also new initiative and strategies directed towards this objective and that  implementing a fact-based gender-diversity strategy based on solid gender-diversity metrics and address the root causes of lower shares of women’s representation.

 

What aspiring women leaders can do?

Africa’s having more women in private sector leadership positions than the global average, was more to do with the willpower of women managers to move up the ladder rather than company policies.

 

Women CEOS had to work twice as hard as male peers to earn the same recognition. .They also had to “cultivate a veneer of toughness, refuse to take setbacks personally, and have the courage to dissent. Other common characteristics of women leaders include persistence in achieving goals, a willingness to take risks and a commitment to professional development, where they actively looked for career opportunities and ways to improve their professional skills.

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