For over a century, March 8 has been a date of great significance in the quest toward gender parity. It’s on this day, International Women’s Day (IWD), that individuals, groups, businesses and governments across the world celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women—and renew their commitment to facilitate gender equality in the workplace and beyond.
You can learn more about International Women’s Day—and what you can do to #PressForProgress here.
Diversity and inclusion in the workplace: Canada and beyond
Survey results outlined in the recent Grant Thornton report, Women in Business: Beyond policy to progress, reveal that while the global percentage of businesses with at least one woman in senior management rose from 66% in 2017 to 75% in 2018, the proportion of senior roles held by women marginally declined from 25% to 24%.
These results are more than likely due to a desire to meet diversity benchmarks—rather than a lack of gender equality policies in the workplace. In fact, according to survey respondents, most businesses have countless policies in place—including equal pay (81%), non-discrimination for recruitment (71%) and paid parental leave (59%)—but they’re simply not generating results.
The report suggests the best way for business leaders to overcome gender disparity is to set a strong tone from the top. This involves taking steps to:
Our report, Women in Business: Beyond policy to progress, explores the topic of gender parity in greater detail and offers suggestions for achieving this goal.
The Report on Doing Business in Canada
The report shows that many business owners are in support of gender parity, as 57% of business leaders agree that employing women fundamentally improves the success of a business. Now more than ever, the need for efforts from both businesses and governments is evident, especially as the 2018 Federal Budget outlines plans to invest in pay equity legislation, support for women-led businesses and more. This report, based on the feedback of business leaders across Canada, delves into issues facing business in Canada today, and how government decisions have impacted the core of Canada’s economy.
Leading Inclusively at Grant Thornton
At Grant Thornton, our Leading Inclusively commitment embraces the ways inclusivity contributes to client relationships, brand pride, corporate performance and the overall well-being of our people.
It starts with our Leading Inclusively Leadership Council, comprised of our Chair, Chief Executive Officer, Chief People & Culture Officer and regional leadership partners, who work to ensure this vision is embedded everything we do as a firm.
In addition, we have also appointed Inclusiveness Partners in each of our business units. They work very closely with our managing partners and local Leading Inclusively committees, all of whom bring a real passion to championing and driving the firm's commitment at the local level, in particular through our approach to attracting, developing and engaging our talent and creating opportunities for learning and open dialogue.
Our Leading Inclusively Leadership Council and Inclusiveness Partners’ efforts increase awareness, drive action, and contribute to creating a culture of inclusion across our firm. This is evidenced by our Great Place to Work – 2017 Best Workplace survey results and feedback including statements such as:
- here, we have opportunities for everyone
- we have a very strong inclusive culture
- shared leadership is an important aspect of our culture
- we’re diverse and yet united
- our culture, it can’t be described but it’s our secret sauce.
- we are supported with our workplace Flex-Ability mindset
Thanks to these efforts, Grant Thornton was proudly named one of the 2018 Best Workplaces for Inclusion in Canada, as well as the 2017 Best Workplaces for Women in Canada.