Could this close the gender gap in the workforce?

Studies show that companies with women in senior management perform better than those without. Yet women are still much less likely to hold leadership positions than men. So, what gives?

Could this close the gender gap in the workforce?
Photo: International School of Management

The pane may be thinner, but the glass ceiling is still very much intact.

Women remain underrepresented at all levels of leadership, accounting for 48 percent of all entry-level positions but making up just 21 percent of C-Suite executives, according to McKinsey’s most recent Women in the Workplace study.

The statistics may seem bleak, but it’s not all doom and gloom.

A string of recent studies have found there is a positive correlation between women in senior management roles and overall company performance. In fact, all evidence suggests that a gender mix at the senior level significantly boosts the bottom line.

Further your career with an international business management degree

Despite this, women still face many obstacles when it comes to career progression.

The ‘boys’ club’ nature of business is just one reason often cited for why women find it harder to climb the corporate ladder. A tight-knit network of men, often formed at business school, can seem impossible to penetrate if you weren’t part of it from the beginning.

But that’s not the case at the International School of Management (ISM) in Paris, where 43 percent of the students in its IMBA, DBA, and PhD programs are female.

Along with teaching the hard and soft skills that every business leader needs to be successful, ISM helps students get into leadership positions by introducing them to business networks while they study.

“We are also connecting students to a community of like-minded people, who can mentor them and help them through the process,” explains Alison Knight, General Director at ISM.

And it's clearly working.

Just ask Kimberly Reeve, an alumnus of the PhD program at ISM. Her time at the business school successfully enabled her to develop a network that, since graduating, has become integral to her career.

“It gave me the chance to make professional connections around the world. Now I have access to other professionals and academicians in this space.”

Kimberly found the professors at ISM played a crucial role in helping her to take the next career step by introducing her to their own networks. 

“One of my professors helped me navigate the system and make connections at an academic conference. This provided me with opportunities to participate in additional academic research and writing.”

Discover ISM’s three international business management degrees

Before receiving her PhD from ISM, it had been one of Kimberly’s career goals to teach at college level. Since graduating, she has had the opportunity to teach as an adjunct professor at two colleges in New York City.

“Having both practical business experience as well as academic training helped me quickly establish credibility with my colleagues and students.”

Kimberly isn’t the only ISM graduate who has seen career progression following her studies.

The most recent ISM Alumni Survey shows that 50 percent of PhD program graduates had gone on to get a promotion, while 45 percent have seen a salary increase since graduation.

Likewise, 42 percent of the alumni of the Doctor of Business Administration (DBA) program at ISM received a salary increase following graduation, with 42 percent getting a promotion in the two years preceding the survey.

For South African DBA candidate Sthu Zungu-Noel, an executive education at ISM has paved the way to career paths she may otherwise not have taken.

“The DBA broadened my view of things and allowed me to explore areas and opportunities I would never ordinarily have looked at,” says Sthu, who is the Founder and CEO of ZUZUTHO Consulting.

You're a leader. Where do leaders go next?

She believes her education at ISM is significantly contributing to her personal growth, along with giving her with the knowledge and confidence she needs to push forward with her career.

“I currently sit on a board of a great non-profit organisation and have found that my studies at ISM have tremendously enhanced my contribution to the board,” she says.

Much like Kimberly, the program has introduced Sthu to a whole new network of people and opened up more opportunities for her in the wider business world.

“I’ve met so many people and made new friends from all over the world in different fields and industries,” she enthuses, adding she has learnt a great deal from her new contacts.

Find out more about how an executive education at ISM can put you on the path to the C-Suite. Speak to a member of the Admissions Team.

This article was produced by The Local Client Studio and sponsored by ISM.



Shark mask wearer falls foul of Austria’s burqa law

Austria's new ban on the full Islamic veil and any face-concealing item is causing confusion, with a man in a shark costume the latest to be ensnared, authorities admitted Tuesday.

Shark mask wearer falls foul of Austria's burqa law
Illustration photo shows a model with an information pamphlet about new Austrian restrictions banning the wearing of burqas and other items covering the face in public places and buildings. Photo: AFP

“This is a new law so naturally there are certain unclear situations and grey areas that need to be ironed out,” Manfred Reinthaler from Vienna police told public radio.

“At the same time there is no legal precedence.”

Austria is the latest European country to ban the wearing of the full Islamic veil, known as the burqa or the niqab, in public places. The law came into force on October 1st.

But in order to avoid being sued for discrimination, the government outlawed at the same time any item of clothing that covers the face.

Government guidelines set out a number of exceptions including masks and disguises at cultural events, work wear such as medical masks, and scarves in cold weather.

But the shark costume case — a mascot for the McShark computer chain — and officers reportedly stopping a girl cycling in a scarf show that some police remain bewildered.


A post shared by McSHARK (@mcshark_official) on Oct 6, 2017 at 2:57am PDT

“Lawmakers did not set out the temperature (when a scarf could be worn),” said interior ministry spokesman Karl-Heinz Grundböck.

There is no central register so the total number of fines of up to €150 ($177) levied so far is unclear, Grundböck added.

The ban on the full-face veil, which remains a rare sight in Austria, was seen as the latest effort by the two governing centrist parties to halt a rise in support for the anti-immigration Freedom Party.

Polls suggest that the far-right party will garner around 25 percent support in elections on Sunday and may become junior coalition partners to Sebastian Kurz's conservatives.