Women in leadership: Lessons from Australian companies leading the way


The Business Council of Australia, McKinsey & Company and the Workplace Gender Equality Agency teamed up to undertake a study using three years of WGEA data and more than 40 interviews. The result, Women in Leadership: Lessons from Australian companies leading the way, provides an evidence-based recipe for dismantling barriers to women’s participation at senior levels and a correlation between representation of women in senior roles and the practice of normalising flexible work.

Key findings

Based on the observations of leading practice made for the report, a 10-step recipe for getting more women into leadership was designed:

1 Build a strong case for change
2 Role-model a commitment to diversity, including with business partners
3 Redesign roles and work to enable flexible work and normalise uptake across levels and genders
4 Actively sponsor rising women
5 Set a clear diversity aspiration, backed up by accountability
6 Support talent through life transitions
7 Ensure the infrastructure is in place to support a more inclusive and flexible workplace
8 Challenge traditional views of merit in recruitment and evaluation
9 Invest in frontline leader capabilities to drive cultural change
10 Develop rising women and ensure experience in key roles

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