New report: how to tackle the gender gap and shape success

8 March 2024

The article at a glance

New report from Wo+Men’s Leadership Centre at Cambridge Judge Business School shares practical ways to tackle the gender gap and shape success from its recent conference.

On International Women’s Day, the Wo+Men’s Leadership Centre (WLC) at Cambridge Judge Business School is publishing a report calling for transformative action to address the gender gap that still permeates every aspect of professional life. Despite many years of progress, more still needs to be done in areas such as talent pipelines, pay and data representation.

The WLC is sharing some key takeaways from its recent annual conference on 25 November 2023, alongside research findings from Cambridge Judge Business School faculty members in its report: ‘Shaping Success, Learnings from a Day of Wo+Men’s Engagement’. The event brought together keynote speakers, panellists, workshop leaders and academics to discuss their insights and ignite conversation.

4 practical tips to overcome the gender gap

4 practical tips for employees to recognise and overcome the dynamics that perpetuate the gender gap

  1. Find tools and strategies to silence self-doubt and showcase contributions
  2. Set boundaries and have the confidence to speak up if something is wrong
  3. Cultivate strong networks and find mentors and sponsors
  4. Achieve a better work-life balance

For example, Khayala Eylazova, EMEA Consulting, Operations Transformation at PwC and a board member at UN Women UK shares how to speak up when something isn’t right. She advises not to be afraid to challenge the system, and if you’re in a position of leadership, use your privilege to open doors for those who are less privileged.

4 ways organisations can actively eradicate disparity in the workplace

  1. Identify and break down hidden biases
  2. Ensure inclusive hiring, promotion, and leadership development for women
  3. Foster a culture where women feel empowered to speak their truth and be heard
  4. Build a robust network of support to help women navigate a complex career landscape

For instance, Anne Robinson, supply chain transformation leader and strategist, offers guidance on targeting diverse communities when recruiting. She recommends taking a risk on someone who may not fit the profile perfectly and to check your own LinkedIn network when it comes to diversity. “Check yourself, and inspire others to the same”, she says.

Report can help individual and organisations shape success

“This white paper pulls together years of expertise across a range of disciplines, combining our unique insights to help individuals and organisations shape success”, says Feryal Erhun , Academic Director of Wo+Men’s Leadership Centre. “We want to create a far-reaching, positive shift in wider society – one that sees the empowerment of women globally as not just the right thing to do, but the smart thing to do.”

Those contributing to the report include Cambridge academics, industry experts and speakers.

Mission to support gender equality and nurture the next generation of leaders

Last year, Cambridge Judge began its journey towards the Bronze Award under the Athena SWAN charter – a global framework to recognise and support gender equity in higher education and research. This is part of the WLC’s 5-year pledge to further support and transform gender equality at Cambridge Judge.

The WLC achieves meaningful global impact across a wide range of organisations: from large companies to small start-ups; within for-profit to non-profit sectors, from corporations to government agencies. By supporting gender diversity in senior leadership positions, the Centre empowers the next generation of leaders, expanding the pool of women with advanced management skills. The WLC is made up of a dedicated group of University of Cambridge academics and researchers interested in gender and diversity.