Diversity in leadership and boards ensures depth and breadth of insight, healthy debate and good decision making. Leaders with diverse backgrounds, ages, genders and experience levels allow organisations to be more adaptable to the ever-changing environment, ultimately making them more successful. Yet while the benefits of diversity are clear, females are underrepresented in leadership and board positions across Australia.
30% women on boards – Women occupy 30% of board seats + only 14 CEO positions on ASX-200 companies
62 is the average age of directors – In 2015, the average age of ASX-100 nonexecutive directors was 62 year of age
27% STEM workforce is women – While women make up just under half of all STEM university enrollments, only 27% of the Australian STEM workforce is women
Barriers to achieving diversity include the substantial costs of ‘benchmark’ qualifications, limited opportunity to attend training, family commitments, workplace bias and a lack of mentors. These obstacles make it difficult for women to secure senior leadership roles, and remain in the sector long term.
While some of these factors will require a long-term cultural change, the WILD Program seeks to remove lack of mentors and cost of qualifications as barriers to success.