• Dr. Juhanna Rogers, PH.D

Elevating the Conversation on Women & Equity in the Workforce

Featured in CEO Essentials, Mar. 2021, CenterState CEO monthly newsletter

March is the celebration of Women’s History Month. When we think about equity it is critical to remember that women, both white and women of color, continue to navigate the challenges of managing roles, responsibilities, and opportunities in the business community.

Prior to 2020, there were signs that women were shattering glass ceilings and making great strides across sectors, however, the presence and voices of women are still few and faint when we examine leadership tables. A Diligent Institute study identifies that board roles for women grew from 19.6% in 2017 to 24.3% in 2019 on Russell 1000 company boards. However, only 22% of board members globally are female, and only 7% are board chairs.1

The election of our first female vice president in this nation is a major step forward. However, there is more work to do to normalize the role of women in leadership positions. Women leaders are slow to grow into executive leadership roles and retention and turnover rates remain higher for women than men. Additionally, women entrepreneurs often struggle to find the financial capital to be as competitive as male peers in the entrepreneurship ecosystem. In 2017, all-male companies attracted nearly 80% of capital, while companies founded by all women received only 2% of funding.3 Long story short, the road for women, and women of color, is still one to be paved. And the challenges brought on by COVID-19 has not helped matters.