Career progression for women in banking


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The Institute of Leadership & Management has published a new report, Women in Banking. It investigates why there are so few women in senior roles in the banking sector, the challenges they face and what the industry can do to address the issue. Our recommendations for action apply not just to banking but across all sectors.

This presentation takes a step-by-step look at the findings and action points for managers and organisations.

You can download the full report from our website:

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Career progression for women in banking

  1. 1. Institute of Leadership & ManagementGender diversityin senior levelsof banking
  2. 2. In a competitive globaleconomy, employeediversity offers a provenroute to increasedinnovation andorganisational performance
  3. 3. Employersincreasingly recognise gender should not be a barrier to career progression
  4. 4. Total number of male and femaleemployees in the UK banking sector 44.5% 55.5%
  5. 5. Total number of male and femaleemployees in the UK banking sector 44.5% 55.5%The total number of employees inthe banking sector and related services(excluding insurance and pensions) is528,000. Of the total number of employees44.5% are men and 55.5% are women.
  6. 6. Men and women working asmanagers in the UK banking sector 70% 30%
  7. 7. Men and women working asmanagers in the UK banking sector 70% 30%Although more women work inthis sector, of the 91,000 classed asmanagers, just 30% are women
  8. 8. ILM surveyed 800 men andwomen in banking to findout why so few women arepromoted to senior levels andthe challenges they face
  9. 9. What we found
  10. 10. Results show a mix of cultural andorganisational barriers make it difficult forwomen to rise to senior levels within banking
  11. 11. British banks are unintentionally filtering out top female talent.
  12. 12. Banking’s male management cultureidentified as the biggest barrier tofemale career progression
  13. 13. 22%Only 22% ofrespondents believepeople in banking arepromoted on merit alone
  14. 14. Half of the women surveyed believebarriers to progression exist 48% 36%
  15. 15. Perception of the existence ofbarriers at different levels Overall 36% 48% Junior role 38% 38%First-line management role 33% 56% Middle management role 33% 65% Senior management role 36% 55% Senior level expert 43% 44% Executive or board level 21% 50% Other 60% 33%
  16. 16. Women, especially in senior levels,believe barriers existMiddle management role 65% 33%Men at all levels are less likely to see barriers facing women
  17. 17. The five biggest barriers identified by women
  18. 18. Attitudes of senior male managers 72% 53%
  19. 19. Greater proportion of men in senior roles 70% 54%
  20. 20. Lack of flexible working opportunities 56% 41%
  21. 21. Current organisational culture 61% 52%
  22. 22. Lack of suitable female role models 41% 33%
  23. 23. What can employers andorganisations do?
  24. 24. 87% of women and 67% of men agreedpositive action is needed 87% 67%Flexible working identified as the number one solution“There are certainly a number of women I knowwho chose a work life balance over seniority andsome leave banking and finance altogether”said one respondent from our survey.
  25. 25. Attract more female graduatesinto careers with opportunitiesfor advancementMake banking a more desirablechoice for womenFor example, promote graduate trainingschemes with clear routes of progression.
  26. 26. Promotion based on merit, nothours in the officeUse output-focused, transparentperformance management
  27. 27. Measure diversity andraise awarenessIncrease female representationat all levels of management
  28. 28. Create sponsorship andmentoring programmesCoaching and sponsorshipbetween senior men andaspiring female leaders“In the past I have had a mentor and it is usefulwhen it is done well, on the whole mentoringand coaching is a very beneficial thing”said one respondent from our survey.
  29. 29. Senior female role modelsneed to be more visible toencourage other women“Having grown as a female in the bankingsector there have always been very fewfemale role models in senior positions”said one respondent from our survey.
  30. 30. Flexible and remote workingfor both men and womenMove away from presenteeismculture and towards effectiveimplementation of flexibleworking practices
  31. 31. The solutions are applicableacross all sectorsThese are essential steps towardsimproving gender diversity in seniormanagement levels and diversity inall areas of an organisation
  32. 32. Our conclusion
  33. 33. Strong leaders of both sexes areneeded to help banks grow andcompete in a changing market Women provide a wider talent pool
  34. 34. “A big fundamentalstep change in cultureis required to pushthings through” said one respondent from our survey.About ILMThe Institute of Leadership & Management (ILM) is Europe’s leadingmanagement organisation. We believe that good leadership and managementholds the key to organisational effectiveness and social and economic prosperity. Sponsored byFor more information visit our website