Business Leader speaks to Louise Johnson, CEO of Fuse, about accelerating gender equality, embracing authenticity, and challenging biases.
You are the only female CEO in the UK sports marketing industry. Approaching 2024, what could be done – governmental, societal, or otherwise, that could accelerate gender equality?
While we have made progress, so much more needs to be done across all areas. Earlier this year, the UN Women’s report, stated it will take 286 years for the world to achieve gender equality. And the World Economic Forum said it will take another 132 years to close the global gender gap.
In each organisation, private and public, there should be a diagnostic of what the problem is and identify the barriers. A plan needs to be made which is aligned between the business or organisational goals and the gender equality approach. Communication is key and all employees need to be engaged with the plan. Most importantly we need to remove bias from the processes and practises, or nothing will change. And we need to accelerate and develop women in the business/organisation through training, sponsorship, and mentoring.
What can business leaders do in their organisations to redress the gender balance in male-dominated industries?
In addition to the above, business leaders must advocate for female leadership. It’s important to challenge unconscious bias and stereotypes – in the boardroom, at recruitment meetings, during remuneration committee sessions, and with stakeholders.