Catherine Fox, Director of Diversity at WLNZ, talks about her latest book, Women Kind, quotas, workplace innovation and why men make the best amplifiers

Catherine Fox is the Director of Diversity at Women & Leadership New Zealand. She has written numerous books including her most recent, Women Kind. She talks to WLNZ about the power of amplification in a workplace setting, why quotas work and how men can make the best workplace amplifiers

Suzi Finkelstein on the importance of amplification

Suzi Finkelstein, Director of Leadership and Advocacy at Women & Leadership New Zealand, talks about why this year's Women's Leadership Symposium has a focus on amplification.

Taking Account: finally recognising womens work

Catherine Fox, WLNZ's Director of Diversity, looks at the economic value of the unpaid work that is commonly borne by women, and talk about how we need to start recognising womens work.

Do working mum's make better managers? Amy Bach thinks so.

There are a number of traits that are useful skills for a manger to possess. The ability to prioritise, resilience, agility, empathy and more. Amy Bach argues that the experience of being a parent is the best form of upskilling you can get in these areas- making working mums the best managers around.

Catherine Fox, WLNZ's Director of Diversity, on the importance of women coming together.

Catherine Fox, Director of Diversity at Women & Leadership New Zealand, talks about the importance of women coming together, cupcake feminism, and grassroots activism in the workplace.



five people putting their hands together over a wooden table for teamwork

Last week, McKinsey and Lean In released their annual report into gender equality in the workplace. The report has been going since 2015 and is the largest of its kind in America. This year alone, 279 companies got involved, with their collective amount of employees sitting at around 13 million. On top of that, 64,000 individual employees were surveyed about their experiences in the workplace.

The findings were really interesting- here are some of the key takeaways from the report :

To achieve equality, companies must turn good intentions into concrete action

While the study found that most companies WANT gender equality, and were prepared to advocate for it in their workplace, not many had managed to implement tangible, practical changes in order to advance gender equality for their employees. Things like setting targets and holding their managers and leaders to account were two recommendations for how workplaces could further advance gender equality.

There has been little progress since the study began

Since 2015, when the first study was published, America’s workforce has made barely any progress. Women still remain the most underrepresented group at every level- with women of colour being the smallest minority within that group. Only one in five c-suite leaders is a woman, and only one in 25 is a woman of colour.

Attrition is not the problem

Women and men left their companies for other opportunities at the same rate- 15%. Of those who left, 81% of women and 82% of men indicated that they were leaving to pursue another job.

Women are left behind from the get-go

It is becoming more evident that women are disadvantaged in the workplace from the get-go. The hiring and promotion process is where the biggest opportunity lies for more women to enter, and move up in the workplace, creating a pipeline for more women in the future. However, unconscious biases mean that women find it harder to get into the workforce and once they are there, find it harder to move up. AirBnB worked with Stanford University’s Women’s Leadership Lab to remove bias from their performance evaluation questions and change how they conduct their interviews, and saw a big difference in the talent they were hiring and promoting.

It’s an uneven playing field

The study found that women simply do not have access to an even playing field in the workplace. They have less access to management and senior leaders, are less likely to receive support from their managers and they are more likely to face every day discrimination (although, it should be noted that the men who participated in the survey also reported and gave examples of discrimination in the workplace, so it sounds like everyone needs to be aware of this.)

Women are also more likely to experience sexual harassment in the workplace, and while many of their workplaces have policies saying that the behaviour will not be tolerated, most women believe that they fail to implement the policies effectively.

If you want to read more, the report can be found here.

Tell us what you think on social media. Share your comments with us on Facebook, tweet us or share on LinkedIn.



Women and Leadership New Zealand