EU project Promoting Women’s Leadership – Launch reception

Press statement by Annika Elias, President of the CEC European Managers, after the presentation of the European Project Report “Promoting Women’s Leadership”  in Brussels.

Ladies and gentlemen,

We have finished an afternoon of discussing the European project ” Promoting Women in Leadership”, thereby focusing on one of the great challenges for Europe: gender equality among managers.

First of all I would like to thank  Ms Anna Hedh from the European Parliament for hosting this event, allowing us to present the results of the project at the center of European decision-making. And of course I would like to thank Mr Martin Jefflén and Mr Christophe Lefèvre, who represent our project partners. Not only for their words today, but also for the work they have put in to make this project happen. But the project would never have happened, without the generous support of the European Commission. Ms Sigried Caspar, from the DG Employment commented on the results and appreciated that employers and employees were involved in the projet.

The two studies, executed by Ms Mirella Visser and Dr Linda Senden, deals with different perspectives on the possibility for women to advance in middle and senior positions within management. It is quite difficult to resume in a few words the results of the project, but for CEC European Managers there are three key items that I would like to sendwith you all today.

The importance of addressing this issue on all levels. The problems need to be addressed at the same time on societal level and in the companies. The importance that all measures that are taken must be in accordance with the corporate culture in the company. There is no “one-size-fits-all” ! And the importance to get relevant, reliable and comparable data from the companies, on national level and on EU level

This project would never have been so successful without the contribution from the five companies, here today represented by Ms Malin Rogström from Sandvik Group. After all it is the reality, in the organization and structure of the company that matters! We are very grateful for their engagement and willingness to participate.

Words put down on a paper must translate now into real deeds. Europe and its companies cannot afford to waste the intelligence and competence of the women any longer. We are facing a lack of managers in many areas within the next decades. At the same time there are a lot of well educated women ready to contribute. To make this happen we call on the legislators as well as on companies and social partners to make use of the results of the report and start working!