- Women-led teams scored slightly higher than male-led teams in a new study by Peakon, a platform for measuring and improving employee engagement. Peakon said the study's goal was to examine the advantages women in leadership bring to their organizations. The study of 60,000 employees in 43 countries didn't show significant distinctions between female-led and male-led companies, but it did find workers in female-led companies had a stronger belief in their companies than those led by men did.
- Peakon asked survey respondents dozens of questions, which mostly revealed consistent answers regardless of leadership. However, for four specific statements, Peakon found that employees from female-led organizations answered in the affirmative more often. Those statements were: "I'm inspired by the purpose and mission of our organisation"; "How likely is it you would recommend [Company Name] products or services to friends and family?"; "Our organisation does a good job of communicating the goals and strategies set by senior leadership"; and "The overall business goals and strategies set by senior leadership are taking [Company Name] in the right direction".
- "While we can't draw definitive conclusions about exactly how workplaces may evolve as diversity is addressed, these results form the start of a discussion about how diverse leadership can be positively transformative to all," Peakon data scientist Ieva Zeromskaite said in a statement. Although the study focused on gender, Peakon said that true diversity "encompasses race, sexuality, economic background, physical and cognitive differences, as well as a broader consideration of gender beyond the two homogenous groups."
These kinds of studies can help illustrate diversity's value in the workplace, as Peakon noted in its statement. However, the benefits of diversity won't be realized if women and other underrepresented groups are brought aboard without strategies for engaging and retaining them, measuring hiring outcomes or guiding them into leadership roles. Diversity hiring without inclusion isn't enough according to experts; employees must be treated as valued team members, recognized for their contributions and given opportunities for advancement.
Recent research has confirmed the business case for investing in diverse and inclusive workplaces, too. A 10% increase on the gender diversity index resulted in a 7% rise in market value in the telecommunications industry in Western Europe, for example, according to a recent Harvard Business Review study. Another study points to a direct causal link between diversity and innovation.
To improve workforce diversity and create positive effects for a company, talent professionals might consider providing workers and managers with implicit bias training and auditing their own talent processes to address bias in performance management, recruiting and sourcing.