Female talent more likely to stay at firms with female CEOs: Weber Shandwick study

They are also more likely to want to become CEOs themselves, In Asia and globally, according to a survey of more than 1750 execs

 Women executives are more likely to remain at companies when they work for highly regarded female CEOs
Women executives are more likely to remain at companies when they work for highly regarded female CEOs

The "reputation premium" attached to female CEOs should not be underestimated, especially when it comes to promoting gender equality and retaining female talent in the workforce, according to a new study from Weber Shandwick.

The Female CEO Reputation Premium? Differences & Similarities, is a supplemental report to The CEO Reputation Premium: Gaining Advantage in the Engagement Era, which was released in March.

The study is based on an online survey of more than 1,750 senior executives across 19 countries in North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Latin America. The new installment provides insights into how male and female CEOs are perceived by the executives who work for them.

It found that in Asia-Pacific, 27 percent of female execs would want to lead a large company, compared to 37 percent of male respondents. A further 51 percent of females quizzed replied "maybe".

On a global level, women executives with an interest in the CEO position are in even shorter supply (23 percent versus 32 percent for men).

Yet when female executives work for a female CEO, interest climbs to 29 percent, indicating the important role today’s female CEOs play in breaking the glass ceiling for the next generation.

The March study proved that CEO reputation matters to an organization’s success and is one of its most valuable and competitive assets. The contributions of CEO reputation to both the company’s reputation and its market value are virtually identical for both male and female CEOs.

According to the new research: "The reputation premium delivered by women CEOs is the positive impact on women in the leadership pipeline who are significantly more likely than male executives to say that their CEOs’ reputations influence them to remain at their companies. CEO reputation influences women even more to stay at their jobs when their CEO is a woman. CEO gender plays no such remarkable role in male executives’ decision to remain at their companies."

"We were pleased to learn from our research that when it comes to the reputation of a company and its market value, CEO gender does not matter," said Leslie Gaines-Ross, chief reputation strategist at Weber Shandwick. "Where CEO gender does count is in the war for female talent at the top which is no small matter. Having more highly regarded female CEOs at the top helps to retain women at their companies."

Read the fully study here.

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