It’s now clear that businesses prosper when more women move into leadership roles. Companies with a higher proportion of women in senior management are on average 48 percent more profitable and show a 37 percent higher return on equity.  In addition, research shows that gender partnership works. Teams containing a better balance of women to men achieve higher results in innovation and effectiveness. Companies whose boards include at least one women have higher stock prices on average.

Mike Kaufmann of Cardinal HealthBut how do men benefit? Why should they help make room for more competitors at the top?

Mike Kaufmann, CEO of the Pharmaceutical Segment of Cardinal Health, a Fortune 50 company, accepts IWL’s first annual “Guys Who Get It Award” at our life-changing THRIVE conference earlier this year
There are a number of ways in which men profit by advancing women at work. One is by reducing the high personal cost that they pay for maintaining the status quo. As long as tradition continues to dictate that men be the dominant gender in the workplace, they will continue to be subject to the limitations of the old male-oriented command-and-control corporate paradigm.

  • Men are pressured to acquire higher and higher status.
  • They are pressured to constantly compete with other men.
  • They are pressured to be the primary breadwinners for the family.
  • These pressures result in longer working hours and poorer immediate and long-term health.
  • These pressures damage their relationships with their spouses and children.

When men enter into full gender partnership with women at work, women’s strong interest in cooperation and consensus-building will contribute to a new corporate paradigm, one that views men and women as equal partners and makes more room for the perspectives, values and choices of the individual, traditionally the prerogative of women.

  • Men will be free to choose their own path to success and define their own terms for job satisfaction.
  • Men will be free to define and live by their own values at work.
  • Men will be freed from full financial responsibility by their wives’ equal ability to earn.
  • They will be able them to spend more time in recreation and at home, lowering their stress and improving their immediate and long-term health.
  • Their increased personal time and lower stress levels will improve their relationships with their spouses and children.

Oh yes, there’s one more way in which men will benefit by advancing women at work: their stock options will most likely be worth a whole a lot more. No minor inducement, that.