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Firms With More Female Executives 'Perform Better'

Firms With More Female Executives 'Perform Better'

London firms with higher numbers of female executives are more profitable, a new report has found.

According to the Pipeline's Women Count 2020 report, London-listed companies make higher profit margins when at least one-third of the bosses are women.

The difference in profitability is a big one, too.

At companies where women make up more than one-in-three exec roles, the profit margin was over 10 times greater than those without.

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London-listed companies make higher profit margins when at least one-third of the bosses are women (Credit: Unsplash)
London-listed companies make higher profit margins when at least one-third of the bosses are women (Credit: Unsplash)

Despite those figures, the numbers of women holding senior roles were still shockingly low.

Out of the 350 largest companies listed in the FTSE 350, only 14 are led by women, as reported by gender diversity organisation The Pipeline.

Beyond that, an incredible 15% of the listed companies have no female execs whatsoever.

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Construction and retail were found to be the sectors with the least women in executive roles - and in the world of finance, fewer than two out of 10 chief financial officers are women.

Former Prime Minister Theresa May, who contributed to the report, said that there could be "no good explanation" for the huge underrepresentation of women at the top of British business, and that it "must change".

An incredible 15% of the listed companies have no female execs at all (Credit: Unsplash)
An incredible 15% of the listed companies have no female execs at all (Credit: Unsplash)

She said: "Every single male CEO who looks around his boardroom table to see nine out of 10 male faces staring back at him needs to ask himself what he is doing to make his business one which his daughter or granddaughter can get on in."

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Group co-founder Lorna Fitzsimons pointed out that when it came to lower level jobs, the numbers of female staff were far higher - but they didn't make it up the ladder to exec roles.

She said: "If you look at retail, entry level jobs are usually 80% women. But they don't make it to the executive level."

Vanda Murray OBE, who chairs the board at construction firm Marshalls PLC, commented that leadership groups with people from mixed backgrounds, ethnicity and gender do better.

Where women make up more than one-in-three exec roles, the profit margin was over 10 times greater (Credit: Unsplash)
Where women make up more than one-in-three exec roles, the profit margin was over 10 times greater (Credit: Unsplash)
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"They challenge more, and they have more discussion and debate and that leads to better decision-making," she said.

Talking about the way forward, Murray said: "We have plans in place. We have talent management programmes and training and development so that we can make sure the younger female managers come through."

Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

Topics: News, women, Jobs

Mary-Jane Wiltsher

Mary-Jane Wiltsher is a freelance lifestyle and culture journalist. Elsewhere she writes for Stylist, Euronews, PHOENIX and What We Seee.

 

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