Newsletter | Empowering Women and Advancing Equity is Business Excellence.

April 04, 2022

Empowering Women and Advancing Equity is Business Excellence.

Notes from the Council | Newsletter March 2022

Capitalism at its best creates broadly shared prosperity that leads to inclusive economies and stronger societies. For prosperity to be broadly shared, companies must have an inclusive workforce and diverse leadership. But this is more than about doing what’s right, this is also about business excellence. When diverse perspectives are at the table, debates are richer, better decisions are made, and outcomes are improved. Research shows that when three or more women are in senior management functions, companies see increased organizational effectiveness and growth. Simply put, when more women work and lead, economies flourish and businesses succeed.The Council for Inclusive Capitalism is full of women leaders throughout the world who are building a more inclusive, sustainable, and trusted economic system that dignifies all talent. In some parts of the world, the gender gap is narrowing, especially for women just starting out in their careers. Yet significant challenges remain. Women have encountered seismic shifts in how they work and live during the past two years. The World Bank estimates a cost of 172 trillion due to the gender wage gap, which has been exacerbated as the pandemic disproportionately impacted women in the workforce.These issues have been a topic of many discussions in celebration of International Women’s Day and recognition of Equal Pay Day. Knowing that words alone will not bring the change we need, our members are taking more than 110 actions to advance UN Sustainable Development Goal 5, achieving gender equality and empower all women and girls. Our platform shares the most innovative ideas business leaders are trying today, all searchable by sector, UN Sustainable Development Goal, sustainable value creation pillar, and more. We invite you to take a look and see what organizations are doing to advance gender equality.The most valuable companies of the future are acting today on the recognition that inclusivity, as well as sustainability and good governance, is critical to their success as a company and to their ability to produce broad-based value over the long-term.Thank you for all that you do.

Lynn Forester de RothschildFounder and Co-Chair
Meredith SumpterCEO


📣Getting started with ESG? Start with your vision and engage your employees.

Incorporating ESG goals into business operations is smart practice of inclusive capitalism. Yet, drafting an ESG strategy and managing organizational transformation can be a daunting undertaking for companies with no clear starting point.Council member Audrey Hametner, Founder and CEO of governance and operations consulting firm THG Advisory Group, spoke with the Council this month about how ESG newcomers should approach strategy building. Start with your vision for your business, she says, and then involve your entire workforce in finding areas for growth.“Once you break open that conversation, there’s no turning back. Then, we start looking at [ESG] from all angles… You just start digging. That’s all it takes.”Watch the 15-minute conversation between Audrey and Council CEO Meredith Sumpter.


⚖ Incorporating equity into business with Electo Analytics Co-Founder Soraya Bagheri

Electo Analytics provides public affairs software that allows users to track legislation and regulations, keep up with officials and stakeholders, and build collaborative projects to influence policy. See how Council member Soraya Bagheri and Electo Analytics are taking action for a more inclusive capitalism.What role do you believe technology plays in an inclusive society and why is access to technology so vital?Technology contributes to inclusion through expanding access to information and resources. Access to technology remains essential to level the playing field—not only in our niche, but in society as a whole.Starting with the information economy and moving forward, access to modern technology is vital for providing the highest quality of education and opportunity individuals need to thrive in our society.Your team is more than 70% women. The technology industry has struggled with gender inequality and gender parity. How was Electo able to overcome this stereotype and why is gender equality important in tech?Electo Analytics has a team of majority women because we made a conscious effort to hire talented individuals who are underrepresented in tech. We also make intentional strides to facilitate a workplace where all of our team members can thrive.Striving for gender equality in tech is a modern approach to ensuring that this century’s leading innovations are truly the strongest ones. History’s most impactful innovators almost exclusively represent men. Their contributions undoubtedly moved society forward. Yet, as we’ve seen, our potential increases exponentially when creators and technologists from all backgrounds have the resources needed to break new ground. Creating open pathways for women in tech fosters a greater wealth of innovation.


 Action Spotlight: Bayer AG Strengthens women’s health with modern contraception

Access to family planning empowers women and promotes gender equality, which, in turn, results in increased economic and social development, and healthier societies overall. By 2030, Bayer AG will provide 100 million women in low- and middle-income countries with access to modern contraception.“We believe that all women should have access to voluntary family planning no matter their economic status, helping improve their health, economic opportunities and progress towards gender equality,” Bayer leadership wrote in their commitment to action. With this goal in mind, Bayer is expanding its offering of long-acting products that are in high demand in international development projects, and will offer these items at preferential prices to partners, such as the United Nations Population Fund.Read more about Bayer AG’s women’s health commitment to action, or click below to view dozens more actions for gender equality.


🤝Ally Feature: RME – Rede Mulher Empreendedora

RME – Rede Mulher Empreendedora, which translates to “Women’s Entrepreneur Network” in English, is the first and largest support network for female entrepreneurs in Brazil.Established in 2010 by Ana Lucia Pedro Fontes, RME promotes female leadership in entrepreneurship through a range of events programs — from the annual Casa das Empreendedoras conference, which connects women startup leaders with investment and technology learning resources, to RME Acelera, an intensive 7-month program that helps leaders grow their young businesses with skill in marketing, sales, and finance.For those with a thriving business seeking growth opportunities, RME offers the Conecta program to bridge the gap between women’s businesses with large companies for negotiation and B2B supply.

👋 Welcome New Council Members

Ravindra NgoFounder & CEO, The Asian NetworkShahul HameedFounder, BEINGOODCassandra LichnockCEO, CalSTRSJonathan ScacciaPrincipal, The Dawn Chorus GroupSiu Cheung Victor PangCEO, Dress Green LimitedJeff JonesPresident & CEO, H&R Block Clive AldredUK CEO, LiquidynamixMark SchneiderCEO, NestléCarl NettletonPresident and Founder, OpenOceans GlobalClaudia AkelCEO, Social Impact MovementBronwyn KingCEO, Tobacco Free PortfoliosAlok JainCEO & Managing Director, Trans-Consult


📰 Inclusive Capitalism in the News

News roundup: See how businesses are responding to the crisis in Ukraine.

International Banker | The role of banking in a just energy transitionPolitico | Brian Moynihan: The bank CEO preaching sustainabilityEnergy Voice | Alistair Phillips-Davies: Fair winds could blow for our economy, but only if we act nowGreenBiz | Mark Cutifani: Circular ‘mining’ reaches for the mainstreamGlobal Renewable News | Lorenzo Simonelli: Baker Hughes Announces Investment in Geothermal Technology Company GreenFire EnergyAfrican Business | Akinwumi Adesina: AfricaGoGreen Fund receives over $30 million investments from the African Development Bank, othersHarvard Law School Forum on Corporate Governance | The Russian invasion of Ukraine: A lesson in stakeholder capitalism?Boston Consulting Group | How to advance gender diversity in the workplaceMcKinsey Global Institute | Ron O’Hanley: Forward Thinking on sustainable and inclusive growthEngineering News | Akinwumi Adesina: African Development Bank to set up facility to support South Africa’s just energy transitionNew York Times | Mark Carney: Is America’s economy entering a new normal?Financial Times | Mark Schneider: A tough test on Russia for the man who turned round NestléCNBC | Bernard Looney: bp establishes partnership focused on offshore wind in Japan


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