A survey of 21,980 publicly traded companies in 91 countries demonstrated that the presence of more female leaders in top positions of corporate management correlates with increased profitability of these companies, according to a paper published by the Peterson Institute for International Economics.
A recent research also presents evidence that achieving a critical mass of at least three women on the board enhances the board’s working dynamics in general and also its outlook on firm innovation.
Knowing how important to increase women leadership, we asked Ebru Tuygun, the chairwoman of the advisory board of the Middle East Women Board of Directors, about the women empowerment in our region.
The Middle East Women Board of Directors’ aim is to increase gender diversity in C-suite and board roles in the Middle East. The UAE government set a great example of having one woman mandatory member in the boards in public companies. We believe this is a great start and we will support the ambition to increase this level even higher. We will collaborate with organisations around the world and look at other examples to make this region best practice. For example, EU introduced a binding objective of at least 40 per cent of board members of each gender by 2026. We will collaborate with organisations and women executives on how we can achieve this together.
How do you plan to achieve this ambition?
We are working together with various associations, institutions and corporate partners for advancement of women. Together, we are aiming to strengthen the leadership capabilities and network of senior women throughout the Middle East. We believe that increasing awareness on having more women in the boards can lead to improvement of the various KPIs of the organisations and also improving the community and culture we live in.
Who do you partner with?
This is a big ambition and to reach our objective we are glad to see more partners joining our network to increase women leadership and enable more women board of directors. We have a big network and glad to see increasing demand of becoming partners. We believe that together with these prestigious organizations, institutions and corporates we can create big impact. In order more women to be in boards, we are also closely working with selected executive head huntes and engaging with HR directors community.
We are also excited to see that Khaleej Times will be featuring a dedicated section for women to voice their experience and recommendations on the path of achieving our ambition.
What events are you up to?
We plan to communicate our messages through the round tables and in our annual event we design together. We have an invite-only advisory board that we gather bi-monthly virtually and aim to organize quarterly physical round tables on selected topics to elevate our women leaders.
This year’s annual Women Board of Directors Summit will take place in December and we are very excited to bring top women executives and industry leaders on how we can build this culture of increasing women board of directors together.
What differentiates Middle East Women Board of Directors?
We are conducting our annual study of the Middle East Women Board of Directors and will share the results in the Summit. We will also be awarding 10 Male CEOs who champion and empower women to get on board. This is for shedding light to the best examples and to see more CEOs, and CXOs supporting women leadership.