Moya Greene, CEO of Royal Mail is calling for more women in UK boardrooms.
25% of FTSE CEO’s to be women by 2015?
During an event which launched ‘25 by 25,’ an initiative aiming to succeed in 25% of the FTSE 100 Companies CEO’s being women by 2025. The Royal Mail CEO said that corporate executives must change how they talk about women in business if we are going to stand any chance of increasing the number of females in the boardroom. She also stated that she believed there is a lack of progession opportunities for women into executive roles because of dismissive attitudes towards their aspirations.
One of the points highlighted at the event led by headhunting firm Egon Zehnder was that there was often negativity surrounding women with ambition. Greene said that by quashing women’s aspirations at a young age, far less women end up in the boardroom, as they don’t feel they are worthy of the roles.
About Royal Mail’s Female CEO
Moya Greene is one of only five Chief Executive women of British FTSE 100 businesses. Since taking charge of Royal Mail in 2010, she has been heralded for her work in transforming the loss-making mail delivery company into a highly profitable company.
When speaking out at the event, Ms. Greene said that out of the one hundred and one banking industry staff she met with throughout Royal Mail’s privatisation in 2013, only two of them were women.
Earlier in 2014, Chief Operator Officer at Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg started a campaign to stop using the word ‘bossy’ in the work place. The campaign focused on banning the use of words associated with gender which subtly undermine aspiration, particularly in women including ‘pushy’ and ‘shrill.’
Recent Statistics from Workplace Attitudes towards Women
Statistics related to the use of gendered words and lack of support for ambitious women in the work place is really quite shocking. During a recent study of evaluating work performance it was found that the word ‘abrasive’ was used seventeen times describing thirteen different women, whilst it wasn’t used at all to describe men. The analysis of one hundred and seventy seven reviews also found that 76% of female staff had negative feedback, compared to 2% of men. Mainly the men received constructive feedback, which was the case for just under a quarter of the women.
Gender bias is a huge problem in the workplace and one that most certainly needs addressing. At the event, Ms. Greene urged mentoring of women with potential and initiatives to support them in their ambitions to work in executive positions. She believes if that if this happens, “25 by 25” is sure to succeed long before the year 2025 arrives.
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