When it comes to increasing organizational diversity, female executives are much more effective than their male counterparts, according to Anuja Gupta, an assistant professor of management at Rutgers University-Camden.
Gupta recently published an article, “Women Leaders and Organizational Diversity: Their Critical Role in Promoting Diversity in Organizations,” in the international journal Development and Learning in Organizations. It cites a major study of leadership competencies in 7,000 executives which showed that women scored better than men in 12 of 16 competencies measured in the evaluation.
“Women outperform men in several key competencies: collaboration, inspiring others, motivating others, listening, and being accepting of others, for example,” Gupta says. “Many of these are nurturing competencies. If you put that in context of diversity, these competencies are the kind that enhance diversity.”
Gupta, who studies strategy and women’s leadership, says that developing diversity is a mission that organizations should not overlook.
“Diversity has taken on the nature of a buzzword, but it is so critical in a global world where we have an influx of nationalities, cultures, and sexual identities,” she says. “Any workplace that wants to be a productive workplace going forward, has to have a plan to deal with its diversity.”
Gupta cites the prevalence and growing number of women and minorities in workplaces, a number that is expected to increase. In 2015, minorities made up 39 percent of the workforce in the United States, while 46.7 percent were women. By 2024, estimates are that 43 percent of the workforce will be minorities, and 47 percent will be women.