When the Rosenzweig Report was started 15-years ago by Jay Rosenzweig, the intent was to spur change at the top when it came to women in leadership positions in the corporate world. The idea that creating awareness could act as a catalyst to create greater gender equality, was a mission Rosenzweig set out on.
And what has he and Rosenzweig & Company learned along the way?
“Rapid change has been elusive, and this year’s numbers are disappointing, however, my personal belief is that this is a moment in time where technological forces and social pressure are setting up the ‘perfect storm’ for a massive leap forward,” Rosenzweig shared. “But it will take bold and courageous leadership to get there. We owe it to ourselves and future generations to seize the opportunity. To have all of these powerful voices come together as a call to action is encouraging. We can’t sit on our laurels if we are to achieve our dream when leaders will simply be leaders, not male or female leaders.”
Looking at this year’s statistics from the 2020 Report, 43 women held such leadership positions…a 7.9% decrease from last year’s 9.9% the previous year. But why?
The company believes it to be women retiring, leaving roles for new opportunities, men supplanting women who were on the list previously, and businesses falling off the list of top 100 companies.
Just wait until next year’s 2021 Rosenzweig Report…and you can thank COVID-19 for what will most likely be — absent any miracle — flat numbers.
Back to this year’s report, of the 538 executives, 43 were women and 495 were men. CFO was the most commonly held C-suite title by female NEOs. Twelve women held a CFO title, and two held SVP of finance titles. Three held COO titles, two held a human resources title, and four served in general counsel positions. Three women held NEO positions in marketing or merchandising functions, one was in a sustainability role, three held CIO or IT titles, and two were in corporate or commercial development roles. Seven women were divisional heads, and one was an executive chair. Of the 43 female NEOs, three were CEOs.
But again, we must beg the question as to why?
“A company can only thrive once its workforce truly embraces gender equality,” said Camille Boothe, head of people & culture at Uninterrupted. “Good corporate governance is the responsibility of leadership, and we should all work to strengthen the alliance between men and women in the workplace. Through inclusion and gender equity, we can become the kinds of change makers that redefine the narratives around success in business, for men and women.”
“Hiring and promoting women in all fields brings a tremendous talent pool of resourceful and industrious leaders to the workforce, and our unique perspectives and insights lead to better decision making,” she said. “The quickest solution to fix the lack of women in leadership roles is to hire women in leadership roles. Period.”
“Obtaining dignity, respect and advancement for women is not just a woman’s issue, it’s a human rights issue,” Milano stated. “It requires including men and welcoming their help to change behaviour and perceptions. Jay Rosenzweig, through The Rosenzweig Report and his support for the #MeToo movement, shows that men can be important and effective allies and advocates for real change.”