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DELOITTE: TRANSFORMING GENDER BALANCE IN THE MIDDLE EAST

Monitor Deloitte recently published a white paper “Getting the balance right- A blueprint for gender balance in the Middle East private sector” which showcases the firm’s recognition of the importance of gender balance in driving economic engines and improving organizations’ bottom line.

The white paper tackles many aspects including the importance of gender balance in the workplace, how to set the foundation for a gender agenda, conduction of a gender balance baseline assessment, articulation of a corporate gender balance, and defining gender balance initiatives, and outcome measurements.

“Today, gender balance is a growing item on the agenda of many Middle Eastern governments, civil society leaders and the wider public. Becoming a gender-friendly organization will enhance brand equity and result in direct and indirect financial gains,” said Aydin Akca, Partner at Monitor Deloitte.

“The Middle East is on a journey of economic transformation towards knowledge-based economies. An organization having a reputation for diversity, inclusiveness and a gender friendly workplace will have access to a wider qualified talent pool. The significance of this outcome will only rise as the trend of graduation rates for females outstrips males in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates among other vital Middle Eastern markets,” he added.

The potential to develop innovative and cutting-edge gender balance initiatives is near infinite. Monitor Deloitte has developed foundational initiatives that any organization can customize, build on and then adopt.

The initial set of initiatives focuses on transforming the underlying cultural biases and perceptions around gender balance. It includes among others:

  • Establish a gender balance cultural change management program with the aim of accomplishing a paradigm shift in an organization’s culture toward a bias-free and gender-inclusive workforce.
  • Celebrate gender diversity by focusing the spotlight on successful women leaders and talent within the organization
  • Introduce a gender-sensitive talent acquisition process by infusing certain gender criteria into the evaluation and hiring process.
  • Introduce a gender-blind compensation policy that ensures “equal pay for equal work” and abolishes the gender pay gap.
  • Introduce flexible working hours & work from home arrangements leveraging digital innovation to enable an efficient back and forth transition between the office and home.
  • Introduce a dynamic and meritocratic women quota for senior executives to ensure that the right woman is placed in the right place to maximize her impact on the organization and avoid ghost placements to satisfy quota restrictions. 

To view the full white paper, please go to: http://bit.ly/1WN0pDv