Leveling the leadership playing field by listening to women.
In our Here To Be Heard study, over 10,000 women from 88 countries responded to one simple question: What needs to change for women to reach their full potential?
After listening to their voices, we worked with Oxford University’s Saïd Business School and BSR to create a report of the findings. Ending systemic discrimination and harmful gender stereotypes was identified as a key challenge for us all to tackle to build a future where business and society are inclusive.
With this conversation series, we’re bringing together individuals to share their experiences and suggestions to help create meaningful change. In our first conversation, we discussed harmful parenting stereotypes. This time, our panel talks about leadership and the barriers women face to reaching their full potential in the workplace.
Women are drastically under-represented in leadership positions.
65% of women in our #HereToBeHeard study wanted to see more women in decision-making positions, and 79% highlighted the need for more equal career opportunities. At Mars, 41% of our leaders are women and we’ve expanded leadership development training for women across our regions and functions, based on our flagship “Women Leading Purposefully” course designed with Harvard University. In 2022, Mars was recognized by Forbes as one of America’s Best Employers for Women, and we’ve been named as one of the World’s Best Workplaces by Great Place To Work for eight consecutive years. But we know there’s more work to be done to better support women in our workplaces and remove harmful/limiting gender stereotypes. In this conversation, we’re delighted to feature:
Becky Snow is the Global Vice President of People and Organization for Mars Wrigley. She has worked for Mars for over 20 years in various roles, functions and locations, and is proud to be a part of a diverse leadership team. She’s passionate about creating sustainable growth through people development.
Dr. Lynn Perry Wooten
Dr. Lynn Perry Wooten is a seasoned academic and an expert on organizational development and transformation. In 2020 she became the first African American president of Simmons University, and among other published work, she is co-author of the Wall Street Journal best-selling book Arrive and Thrive: 7 Impactful Practices for Women Navigating Leadership.
Dr. Raven Baxter, Ph. D.
Dr. Raven Baxter, Ph. D, is an American science communicator, molecular biologist, and campaigner for STEM education. She is recognized in Fortune magazine's "40 Under 40 in Health" list for 2021, and Forbes 30 Under 30 for 2022.
We can all listen, learn, and do more. Here are some key things we heard.
I think it's important as women to speak up to microaggressions gently and kindly, and just point them out. Or point out that, "Actually, your assumption there was flawed," and encourage a bit more curiosity.
– Becky Snow
Representation to invest in you
When I'm coaching young women, I talk about, "You have to look at organizations who are going to invest in you." So that includes leadership training, making sure that you have a culture where you value pay equity. That's making sure you have representation.
– Dr. Lynn Perry Wooten
Show up authentically
I think the reality is you have to look at, "Am I harming anyone or any process at work by being just who I am?" I feel as though as long as you're still cooperative, respectful, you're not crossing anyone's hard boundaries, why not just show up authentically?
– Dr. Raven Baxter, Ph. D.
Together we can help women reach their full potential
The actions we take today can build a better tomorrow. With our continued learning, including what we heard from women in the #HereToBeHeard study, we’re committed to creating enduring positive change for women in our workplaces, sourcing communities and the marketplace. Here are just a few of the actions we’re taking toward a more gender-inclusive society. Learn more about our platform to advance gender equality.