Spring is bursting out. Blossom fills the hedgerows and the improbable bumblebee can be seen hurtling from one pollen bonanza to the next.
And as it’s spring, the deadline for submitting gender pay gap data has also arrived. And for many businesses, there is one benefit to Brexit – it eclipses their humiliating news about the lack of progress since first reporting it last year.
But back to the bumblebee. What does it have in common with the gender pay gap?
The answer is that they both present enigmas. How are bumblebees able to fly? And how can the gender pay gap be closed?
They are enigmas until you shift your perspective from a fixed point, anchored by the current norm, and then examine the dynamics involved scientifically, which avoids the pitfalls of causal assumptions. You also have the use the inductive analytic approach, which means examining all the data to identify the story it tells, rather than the more rapid, but limited, deductive approach of selecting data to test your preconceived hypothesis.
Clearly applying this expansive approach to the challenge of closing the gender pay gap is simply not one that any typical organisation can afford to pursue, however compelling the carrot and stick motivators for change may be.
It took physicists to crack the bumblebee enigma and now we have taken the same painstaking approach combining management consultancy frameworks with the rigour and insights of psychology to crack the enigma of closing the gender pay gap.
What really matters and makes the difference in enabling those great big bumblebees with tiny wings to fly is that bumblebees wings flap vertically – not horizontally like birds – which uses an entirely different set of physical forces – more helicopter than aeroplane.
And what matters most and will make the greatest difference to enabling female talent to populate higher paid sectors, roles and levels of hierarchy, is the ability of those around them to hear and value their contributions to the same extent as they would if their words and work were contributed by their male peers.
Research over 11 years has enabled us to identify this first domino, (quantified as the contribution-to-value gap), and the subsequent cascade of issues it sets in train, undermining company performance and sustaining the gender pay gap.
We’re also clear that this is actually easy and resource-friendly to address, where the will exists. The word ‘gender’ isn’t part of the solution as the benefits stretch across the entire population of organisations.
Heads can be held higher next spring when gender pay gap numbers are made public, by taking advantage of this science to address this reality of behavioural economics.
Order Listen or Lose to read the full set of insights driven from the Women’s Sat Nav to Success 2018 research survey.
Or cut straight to the chase, by contacting me to arrange a first meeting to find out how to make this change happen.