Women are still under-represented in senior leadership positions in the corporate world, despite the benefits of having women in board-level positions being widely known. Meanwhile, women-led SMEs are thriving, providing £50bn of UK economic output between 2006 and 2010 and predicted to create one in three new jobs in the US by 2018.
We were curious to understand why women are seeing such success in their own companies but not in established businesses and how organisations can better accommodate their evident creative and entrepreneurial zeal.
We spoke at length with over 35 women in senior roles, in both established organisations and women-owned businesses. We found the same things being said again and again – the corporate environment is the principal barrier to women fulfilling their ambition to lead.
It’s time established organisations look to their women-owned counterparts to understand where they could and should be doing things better. If they don’t, then today’s colleagues could all too easily become tomorrow’s competitors as unsatisfied women leave to start and grow new businesses.
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