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34 GLOBAL DIVERSITY For PwC, recruiting and retaining the ‘best’ means having a diverse mix of people, able to bring a range of differing perspectives and viewpoints to bear on solving clients’ issues. On some measures we are doing well. In others, we still have a long way to go. ne of the areas where we still have more to do is in gender diversity - especially at the higher levels of PwC firms. Our graduate intake each year is split equally between men and women. But, as people reach senior manager and director level, the proportion of women falls. And, whilst 22 per cent of new partners of PwC firms are female, women account for only 13 per cent of all partners of PwC firms. The percentage of women in leadership positions is even lower. There are a Gender diversity is the one area that is being dealt with on a global level. Although each firm’s cultural, social, and economic differences are taken into account, creating opportunities for women is seen as a networkwide objective. Until this imbalance is corrected, we - and our clients - will continue to miss out on the full potential of our female talent. We know there are no quick answers, and solving this problem will take several years. We are fully committed to doing whatever is necessary to support a greater number of women reaching the highest levels of PwC. The Gender Advisory Council (GAC) consists of Partners from the following countries and regions: Australia, Canada, Central and Eastern Europe, China, India, France, the Netherlands, the USA and the UK. Supported by a full time Programme Director, the Council’s aims focus on: • Educating and raising awareness of the business case for better focus on female retention and development across all territories; • Raising awareness of the current state within PwC and how to improve it • Researching, identifying and recommending specific actions and initiatives to support leadership development for women and improved succession planning/talent management; • Defining accountability – working to improve the “status quo” and recommending measures to sustain progress and success. • Sharing examples of both PwC and external best practices by making the GAC a global centre of knowledge and expertise. Recent initiatives have included a “deep dive” into the data and issues which surround the issue of women in PwC, and the building of alliances with organisations such as Catalyst, Opportunity Now, Stonewall, the International Finance Corporation’s Gender Program and the Women’s Forum for the Economy and Society (with whom we have been a key sponsor at the annual Deauville, France conference for the last three years). We have also completed an in-depth qualitative project in which 80 female Partners from around the world were interviewed about their careers with the Firm and the recommendations for change which they would suggest to both our existing leaders and other PwC women. A version of this report, “The Leaking Pipeline: Where Are our Female Leaders?” will soon be available for download from the Gender Advisory Council’s website at www.pwc.com/women O In recognition of the concern felt by all PwC firms about this issue, we formed the Gender Advisory Council in 2006, reporting directly to Sam DiPiazza, our global CEO. The Council advises Sam and the Firm’s leadership on how to address the low representation of women at the top. few bright spots: in four countries, including in PwC Turkey and PwC Bahrain, the senior partner of the local PwC firm is a woman - but in general the picture is less positive. Whilst basic attitudes towards inclusion, equal opportunity, tolerance, and discrimination know no boundaries within the organisation, each PwC country must assume responsibility for dealing with its particular diversity issues. For more on the GAC’s work and to learn about various PwC territory initiatives which support female retention and development, please visit the Gender Advisory Council’s website at: www.pwc. com/women. As well as reading interviews and profiles of female Partner role models, you can listen to Sam DiPiazza’s pod cast, read the Gender Agenda, a thought leadership blog, and download a reading list and a recent report from PwC’s Genesis Park leadership development programme on economic barriers and enablers which impact women in the workplace. uk | engage ISSUE SIX 2008