Feature

Business columns: The business case for female leaders

There&rsquo;s growing evidence that companies that aggressively promote women are more profitable than their competitors, said Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow in<strong> </strong><em>The Boston Globe.</em>

Rebecca Tuhus-DubrowThe Boston Globe

For decades, the issue of women’s advancement in business has been framed as a matter of fairness and equality, said Rebecca Tuhus-Dubrow. “Now some researchers are saying it should also been seen in another way: as a smart way to make money.” There’s growing evidence that companies that aggressively promote women are more profitable than their competitors.

But “while the link between higher levels of female leadership and profits is fairly well-established, it’s less clear that women are directly responsible for the success.” It’s possible, for instance, that companies that make a point of promoting women also tend to be flexible, adaptable, and innovative—and thus more successful. Other scholars theorize that companies that involve more women in executive deliberations make “smarter decisions.” According to this school of thought, if more women had served “as a prudent counterweight to reckless, testosterone-addled men,” the worst of the financial crisis might have been averted. That’s debatable. But profit-hungry companies can’t afford to ignore the link between female leadership and outstanding corporate performance.

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