Going full tilt
Fewer than 17% of the thousands of business executives who responded to a recent Korn Ferry Hay Group survey said their organizations possess the leadership capabilities they need. So why aren’t more companies making a bigger push to close the gender pay gap, and to benefit even more from the talents of half their workforce?
"Organizations can better support women's progress in many ways," said Peggy Hazard, Korn Ferry Hay Group’s managing partner and co-lead for Advancing Women Worldwide Solutions. "Our research shows one key way to achieve wage parity is to ensure more women advance to senior managerial levels, including to CEO, board director, and C-suite executive positions. To get women there, we need to ensure that early, and throughout their careers, they receive mission-critical and complex assignments?and that they receive candid feedback about their performance. Both of these are essential to build the skills, experiences, and attributes most valued at the top.”
Besides capturing the corporate concerns about talent pipelines in a survey with more than 7,000 respondents for its study on Real World Leadership, the firm recently and separately examined the gender pay gap.
Korn Ferry Hay Group found the gap exists globally?just not in the way many people think. Instead, tapping into its database of more than 20 million salaries at 25,000 organizations in 100 nations, the firm found the gap is small—as low as 2.7% in France, for instance, or 1.4% in Australia, or .8% in Britain—for like positions. While the firm did not look at US data, the disparities identified found can be pegged to women still not getting access to the highest-paying jobs.
The company’s study also offered a solid business case for why the gender pay gap must be closed?and why and how organizations can benefit if they stop underutilizing half their workforce.
What sorts of steps should companies undertake? As outlined in the report, Leveling the Playing Field : What Organizations Can Do, these include: