Elena Rechkalova Knows How to Add $28 Trillion to Global GDP
About gender equality trend on boards of directors
As research show, companies where both men and women enter the authority team are the most successful. Elena Rechkalova told about gender equality trend on boards of directors of Russian and international firms within the framework of the 66th FCEM World Congress. She presented the results of research done by respected international consulting companies and explained why women taking leading posts contributed to sustainable development.
Elena Rechkalova - Chairperson of the Women on Boards Committee of the Association of Independent Directors
Elena Rechkalova shared that a few months ago they created the Women on Boards Committee of the Association of Independent Directors. Its activity is aimed at promoting gender diversity practice in Russia and increasing number of women professionals in companies’ management. The speaker is sure that diversification of the management including gender one provides multi-sided view of management on the development of company, decreases risks, improves its image, and raises investors’ interest.
Women’s share on Russian boards is 9%. It remains one of the lowest in Europe: 3.2 times less than in Western Europe and 5.6 times less than in Norway.
Gender diversity provides achievement of higher business indices. Thus, according to MсKinsey&Co research, firms with high women’s share in top management work more effectively than their competitors having only men on boards. According to report for 2018, companies of upper quartile of gender diversity showed 21% more possibility of prevailing over their rivals from lower quartile in earnings before interest and taxes. Credit Suisse notes that investors are ready to pay premium price by 19% more for the companies run by women because their return on equity (ROE) is by 19% higher than the average. Their owners receive by 9% more in the form of dividend payments. International consulting company McKinsey&Co counted: if women take place in the world trade market equal to men’s the world GDP will increase by $28 trillion by 2025. That is combined GDP of the USA and China by the moment. World business community considers it important to make steps for increasing women’s participation in the strategic management.
23 countries have soft and hard quotas on women’s representation on boards.
Russia takes senior positions in women leaders’ representation in business sphere (43%). That is why the Committee aims to unite women who are professional managers and directors, create conditions for transforming their competencies from the sphere of operational management to strategic one.
Referring to the research results, Elena noted that companies run by women entered crisis slower and came out of it faster. It is related to the fact that women by nature are less risk-averse, strive to cooperate, and are ready to defend difficult decisions.
Companies with gender diversity can attract talents and improve client orientation and satisfaction of the staff.
Elena Rechkalova is sure that there are many women in Russia who are able to realise their potential on strategic posts with huge success showing society female role model in management. Elena herself is a bright example of that. She skillfully combined the role of business leader and family care. Now she is actively working on boards.
According to Elena Rechkalova, leaders are not divided into men and women. Leader is a person that can guide people. Such a person is charismatic and professional.
It is important that the society treats leaders with respect and trust regardless of their sex.
Anna Repina, news agency of the Eurasian Women’s Community
Translated by Yan Zarubin