The Number of Female CEOs is Majorly Overestimated
It's not your imagination: there's so much more emphasis on the power differential between men and women in the business world and it's coming to light primarily due to a year of passionate rallies and surging support for the #MeToo and #TimesUp movements. In 2018, organizers are hoping to embrace some of that progress, as well as pushing for global gender parity which is being called #PressforProgress.
We have talked about the obvious pay gap between men and women in the US, but it's surprising how much of the world believes there is equality when in fact there is not. Recently, Ipsos MORI has released a study from approximately 27 countries which highlights global concerns about equality. Their research found that sexual harassment is seen as the biggest issue facing women across the world and it also found serious misconceptions on a whole host of other issues.
One of the largest concerns is the fact that women are grossly under-represented in the business world, namely there are very few women actually running corporations. Almost all of the countries that were polled in the study hugely overestimated the share of female chief executives (CEOs) at the world's 500 biggest companies (Fortune 500).
The following infographic shows a selection of the countries polled with over 20% of respondents in Mexico, Brazil, India, Turkey and Russia all guessing the share of female CEOs at the biggest companies is in excess of 20%. In actuality, only about 3% of the Fortune 500 CEOs are female. Even the USA, France, and Germany estimated the real number to be in the high-teens percentage-wise, which is a bit disturbing.
We live in a world of perceived equality; how can we know that there really is inequality if the majority of people simply don't see it. Studies have shown that diversity (gender-wise) among executive boards lead to some of the most productive and powerful companies in the world -- so having women in power is clearly important. The only way we can advance this change is by acknowledging that it is a problem. It is my hope that GradMoney readers will consider this discrepancy as they invest and move about in the business world.
(The chart below and more information on statistics can be found on Statista by CLICKING HERE.)