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What Women Want – and Why You Want Women – in the Workplace: Watermark and CCL White Paper

Posted By Cathleen Clerkin, PhD, CCL, Wednesday, July 19, 2017
Updated: Monday, July 24, 2017

Note: Our new study with the Center for Creative Leadership (CCL®), a global provider of leadership development and research, reveals the powerful influence that women have on workplace cultures – and explores the steps organizations must take to recruit, promote, and retain female talent.

“What Women Want — and Why You Want Women — in the Workplace” by CCL senior researcher Cathleen Clerkin, Ph.D., is now available. Below are the highlights that Cat captured and shared at our Tuesday, July 18 unveiling at Ericsson.

Organizations that don’t realize the importance of women in the workplace are missing out. Besides doubling your talent pool, recruiting women into your organization may also increase your company’s financial performance.

Previous research shows that Fortune 500 companies with the highest representation of women on boards financially outperform companies with the lowest representation of women on boards. Moreover, gender-diverse teams have higher sales and profits compared to male-dominated teams, and a recent Gallup study found that gender-diverse business units have higher average revenue than less diverse business units.

But women in the workplace might do even more than boost the bottom line.

In this study, we found that having more women in the workplace actually makes an organization a better place to work. Our hundreds of survey respondents estimated what percentage of individuals in their workplace were women. Answers ranged from 0–100%, with the average being about 45% (pretty close to the national average).

Having a higher percentage of female talent in an organization predicted:

• More job satisfaction.
• More organizational dedication.
• More meaningful work.
• Less burnout.

Our research shows that companies with more female employees have:

 

But that’s not all — we found that having more women in the workplace was also positively related to employee engagement and retention. Specifically, when asked why they stay with their current employer, people from organizations with a high percentage of women were more likely to cite positive and meaningful organizational culture, including having:

• Enjoyable work.
• A job that fits well with other areas of their life.
• Opportunities to make a difference.

These new findings persist regardless of participants’ age, industry, organization size, leadership level, ethnicity, and gender.

In fact, while both men and women in our survey responded with this same positive pattern of results, our findings were even stronger for men on some measures — specifically being satisfied with their job, enjoying their work, and not feeling burned out.

For our respondents, having more women in the workplace is associated with positive organizational outcomes for both men and women.

These are just some of the many findings of our latest research report, based on responses from almost 750 leaders and aspiring leaders. Download the full white paper below to dig deeper into our findings about women in the workplace and to learn how your organization can empower female employees and also improve retention, outcome, performance, and happiness for both men and women.

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