4 steps to create a productive female talent pipeline
What HR can do to ensure a productive female talent pipeline
"The UK economy will need two million new managers by 2024, and 1.5 million will need to be women if we are to achieve gender balance”
Here are 4 steps to create a productive female talent pipeline
What steps can HR take to move things on?
• Take early action
Women who join organisations today are for the most part optimistic and believe they can be anything they want to be. Many twenty somethings can be blissfully unaware of the barriers that exist, until they actually hit them. By that time the wake-up call maybe too late and disillusionment sets in. Entry level is the time to engage women to give them career development support and skill training before they are eligible for Middle Management positions. Many employers focus their energy only on a handful of hi-po women. Extending this to a wider group will help grow a more productive female talent pipeline. Employees develop new skills and missing competences can be learned. Making decisions for employee development too early, is limiting.
Female employees should also be encouraged early on to take charge of their own careers. There is still an expectation in some quarters that the employer will take care of them, which for many will not be the case. Early training and competency development is critical. If the employer won't deal with it, early careerists must take on that responsibility themselves.
• Give regular constructive feedback
There is enough research that suggests that women generally (although not always) prefer regular feedback and communication. Male managers should be trained to deliver this appropriately, as there is enormous potential for miscommunication. Women tend also to be treated more harshly than men and held to a higher standard. There need to be accountability checks to manage that.
• Encourage intra-preneurship
I very often hear that because organisations have a women’s group and unconscious bias training, they are believed have every and therefore "equal" opportunity. This is clearly not the case. [Tweet "Women need to be both mentored, sponsored and have access to senior women."] They can’t be what they can’t see and hear. Their careers should be discussed openly with them and stretch or international assignments encouraged earlier in their careers than is now normal. Men who mentor women should be specifically trained. There is no ill intent but men do not know what’s going on for women and need support on how to approach some of their challenges. They generally don’t understand that the presenting issue itself is not always the deal breaker. There is sub-text.
• Implement systemic “nudges”
As people can’t be relied on to change their behaviour consistently, it’s necessary to embed “nudges” in all systems related to career progression, whether adverts or performance evaluations. Gender neutral ads stripped of male coded language are becoming increasingly common. Many companies now insist that there should be at least one female candidate on any short list even though research suggests that is doomed to fail. The ideal number is two or even three. Companies such as Google are insisting that all hiring are signed off by at least one woman to avoid confirmation bias hiring decisions.
Recruit, train and retain to strengthen your female talent pipeline
Found that interesting?
Learn more about our services
Make your dreams a reality with a professional evaluation of your career to date.
The evidence is in. More women in your company can deliver 35% greater financial returns. (Catalyst)
Dates for the Diary
November 12th European Commission DG GROW
Informal talk on how to deal with sexism - 12.30 - 1400
November 25th Council of the European Union - Corporate Event
How to deal with sexism and harassment in the workplace
Download and listen free podcasts
How to Create an Effective USP What is a USP? Our Unique Selling Point or UVP (Unique Value Proposition) is our key core message about where...read more
How to Rethink the Modern Workplace for Gender Equality New research shows that diversity and inclusion is a top priority for leaders. So why...read more
Menopause in the workplace In this podcast with Nicki Williams award winning author, keynote speaker and Founder of Happy Hormones for Life,...read more
How to Cultivate Empathy in the Workplace Nancy Milton, international business communications expert, keynote speaker and author, share some vital...read more
Taking Care of your COW Tanvi Guatam, international Personal Branding expert says there is a misconception out there that a personal brand is...read more
The importance of Hard Talk Dawn Metcalfe, author of Managing the Matrix and Hard Talk, shares with us tips to achieve the lasting communication...read more
When Does Female Rivalry Turn into Sabotage There’s a lot of stuff written on social media about female rivalry and competition between women. Some...read more
Goal setting tips to boost your career The happiest people are those that really love their jobs. Those that don’t, dread Sunday nights and...read more
Sexism: How to stage a Bystander Intervention in the Workplace In this power coaching podcast, we're going to tackle one of the questions...read more
How to Get Noticed by Head Hunters & Recruiters In this power coaching podcast, we're going to tackle one of the questions asked multiple...read more
One of the many challenges women face in the workplace is the widespread existence of a “presence culture” in male-dominated corporate organisations.read more
To overcome negative self-talk, we need to break out of the low self-esteem cycle that keeps us trapped low instead of reaching our full potential.read more
A company might sound like they are diverse and inclusive, but make sure to do a thorough investigation into gender washing.read more