Business case for diversity


Improvements with Increased DiversityBusiness Case
Improving performance
  • 50% higher profitability where women make up at least 15% of senior managers compared to less than 10%.(1) 
  • 21% more likely to achieve above-average profitability if companies are in the top quartile for diversity on their executive teams. (2) 
  • 5% excess annual returns in companies with at least one female director compared to an all-male board. (3) 
  • Higher return on capital: 66% for companies with the most women on a board compared to the least. (4) 
 Better decision making
  • Different perspectives and experiences prevent “group think” and bring new thinking (5), essential for the energy transition.
  • Companies with above average diversity on their management teams report 19% higher innovation revenue.(6) 
 Accessing the widest talent pool
  • 50% potential loss of talent pool by not having women. (5)
  • Companies are seen less attractive to people to join and leads to lower employee’s satisfaction. (7)
Being more responsive to the market/consumers
  • Women drive 70-80% of all consumer purchasing; leadership representing women could lead to more market orientation.
Achieving better corporate governance and ethics
  • Women’s board representation is positively associated with CSR and social reputation. (8) 
  • Just one female on the board cuts the risk of going bust by 20%. (9)



POWERful Women business benefits full PDF can be downloaded here.


  1. Credit Suisse 2014, CS Gender 3000: Women in Senior Management
  2. McKinsey 2018, Delivery through Diversity
  3. Credit Suisse 2016, CS Gender 3000: The Reward for Change
  4. Catalyst 2007, The Bottom Line Corporate Performance and Women’s Representation on Boards
  5. Women on boards 2011
  6. Boston Consulting Group 2018, How Diverse Leadership Teams Boost Innovation
  7. Mckinsey 2015
  8. Byron, K and Post, C 2016, cited in CIPD June 2018 Diversity and Inclusion at Work: Facing up to the Business Case
  9. Davies Report ‘Women on Boards’ 2011, Citing research by Professor Nicholas Wilson, Leeds University Business School