By David Meyer
October 23, 2018

Good morning. David Meyer here, filling in for Alan from Berlin. and McKinsey have released the latest instalment of their Women in the Workplace survey, and it does not make for pleasant reading.

Now in its fourth year, the survey shows “almost no progress” in improving the representation of women in corporate America. Only one in five C-suite executives is a woman, and only one in 25 is a woman of color. The report shows quite dramatically how the problem is exacerbated at each step of the promotion process—there’s already some disparity at the hiring stage, but it gets worse and worse as you go up the chain.

Part of the problem seems to be the fact that managers offer less support to women than they do to men—and again, even less support to women of color. As the report states: “This is a problem because manager support is tied to positive outcomes like higher promotion rates and a stronger desire to stay with a company.”

Then there’s the fact that little more than a third of companies set gender representation targets. And although transparency is seen as key to improving the situation, a mere 12% of companies show their employees key metrics on gender diversity. With most companies not holding senior leaders to account for making progress on this front, no wonder that only half of employees think their employers are taking the issue seriously.

The LeanIn/McKinsey report also has plenty to say about everyday occurrences of discrimination and harassment. As Emma Hinchcliffe highlights in her Fortune piece on the report, many female employees find themselves being the only women in meetings and other workplace situations, and these “Onlys” experience more microaggressions such as being mistaken for someone of a more junior level, needing to prove their competence more than men do, and of course sexual harassment.

On that last note, Uber’s top dealmaker, Cameron Poetzscher, has resigned after apparently being disciplined over sexual misconduct allegations. Shortly before that news broke, CEO Dara Khosrowshahi admitted at a Financial Times event in London that there was still work to be done on improving Uber’s workplace culture—the toxicity of which was a main reason for the ouster of his predecessor, Travis Kalanick.

More news below.

David Meyer


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