Women in life science have been historically underrepresented, especially when it comes to leadership positions, but is that about to change? The ongoing demand for female leaders is beginning to show gains in industries such as finance and tech, leaving us pretty certain that life science is sure to follow.
The Negative Impact of the Pandemic
Research conducted by Grant Thornton found that the pandemic had a greater impact on women in the workplace, with figures showing females were four times more likely than their male counterparts to leave the workforce.
However, while women were more likely to remove themselves from the workforce, the pandemic can be seen to have had a positive impact when it comes to women developing to more senior roles within the life science sector. As the world adapted to new ways of working by utilizing technology, this allowed for remote, agile, and hybrid ways of working to become the norm. Within the tech industry, 82% of leaders surveyed believed these advances would benefit women’s careers by breaking down traditional barriers and have led to more women applying for senior roles than in previous years.
The New Outlook – a Commitment to the Progression of Women
When you compare the number of female leaders in 2019 to 2022 you will find that there has been a 20% increase in science and tech roles, helping companies to reach new heights of diversity and showing a real commitment to the progression opportunities available to women.
The good news for companies that hire female leaders and have a more diverse range of people running the company is that they are 20% more likely to achieve above-average profits each quarter than those that are dominated by traditionally male boards. There are a number of reasons why this may be the case but ultimately a diverse leadership team is better equipped to support outcomes for a wider range of people, making them a more popular choice.
Pushing for Rapid Progress
Despite the increase in female leadership roles, there is a growing demand that diverse leadership teams become the norm rather than the exception, increasing pressure on firms that currently have a heavily dominated white, male team. A recent report by Deloitte provided insight into the range of reasons that change is not happening as quickly as it should, concluding that there were many reasons for the slow progress including political reasons, lack of new legislation, and social expectations of women.
While there may be explanations for why change is not progressing as quickly as it could, it should be acknowledged that this does not mean it’s time to stop trying to incorporate diversity into all teams. Slow progress is better than no progress and there is clearly an appetite for ensuring recruiting practices promote diversity. With new ways of working often suiting women better than the traditional workplaces, now is the time to keep moving forward and ensure that women have the opportunities to become leaders and role models for the future generations of women in life sciences.
Find Your Next Female Leader Via GeneCoda®
When you consider that a female-led company is statistically more likely to be successful than a team that is lacking in diversity, it makes sense to start searching for the best candidate for your vacant executive roles. At GeneCoda®, we welcome the opportunity to support any company on a journey to better diversity and maintain relationships with several exceptional candidates that may have what you need. Get in touch with us to discuss your requirements in depth and help to pave the way for more female leaders in the life science industry.