Learn more about the WEPs CEO Leadership Awards:
To learn about the Women’s Empowerment Principles please watch the WEPs video.
Benchmarking for Change
Recognizes a company for reporting meaningful metrics, indicators and qualitative information to track gender equality progress at all levels of the company’s operations.
L’Oréal, a global cosmetics and personal goods company with over 80,000 employees, emphasizes measurement and indicators to drive change and monitor results. The company created a dashboard with over 30 indicators to embed gender equality within the organizational strategy and is implementing a robust, indicator-driven, gender equality certification of subsidiaries—30 have already been certified. Measurement through the use of sex-disaggregated data is critical for L’Oréal to assess progress and identify opportunities for further improvement.
Business Case for Action
Deloitte UK, the business advisory firm, has taken bold steps to combine targeted actions with cultural change to improve gender diversity; the firm is clear that long-term and sustainable change will only happen when the two are combined. In July 2015 it publicly reported its gender pay gap, which showed that its gap stands at 17.8% whilst its ‘in grade’ gap (looking at pay parity for those at the same level in the organisation) stands at around 1.5%. This gave Deloitte the opportunity to show its people and those outside the firm that its challenge is about the number of women it has in senior positions in our firm, rather than parity of pay. To tackle this issue it implemented a range of initiatives to increase the number of women it recruits (at both an entry and experienced-hire level) ensuring that development opportunities are clear, relevant and bespoke to the individual, as well as providing a working environment that enables women to balance a successful career with family life.
The CEO of Toks Restaurantes, a multi-unit chain restaurant in Mexico, has made it a priority to address income inequality in Mexico, in particularly for women and children, through an income generating programme called Productive Projects" where women are integrated into the company’s value chain by supplying quality, natural and handmade products to the restaurant. To date, the programme has impacted the lives of over 6,000 women in over 50 communities in Mexico and has brought positive bottom line impacts to the company though increased profits, innovation and performance.
Aurizon, Australia’s largest rail-based transport company, believes challenging deep rooted attitudes and beliefs is the key to sustainable business outcomes. Hockridge has made it a goal to disrupt the status quo by addressing unconscious bias, changing social norms and setting ambitious targets to advance gender equality in what has typically been a male-dominated industry.
“The challenges women face in historically male-dominated work environments are deeply entrenched. Clearly, traditional gender hierarchies and cultural norms prevail not just inside workplaces, but also in the family and society. Achieving gender equality without empowerment would be as unlikely as it would be pointless.” - Lance Hockridge, Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer, Aurizon
The review process identifies outstanding and innovative initiatives that advance the implementation of the WEPs and gender equality within a company. Specifically, the review focused on actions spearheaded by the CEO that resulted in concrete, sustainable programmes with measurable impact. The Awards are reviewed by an independent Awards Committee.
The Awards Committee is comprised of members of the WEPs Leadership Group, a multi-stakeholder volunteer group that provides strategic guidance to the UN Women/UN Global Compact WEPs partnership and represented business, academia, civil society, women’s organizations and international institutions. (Note: To avoid any conflict of interest, Leadership Group members are not permitted to participate in the process if their CEO was a nominee.) The Awards Committee members are:
Business for Social Responsibility- Ms. Racheal Meiers, Director, Inclusive Economy
Calvert Group Ltd.- Ms. Shade Brown, Sustainability Analyst
Cranfield School of Management- Ms. Elisabeth Kelan, Chaired Professor of Leadership
Commonwealth Business Women- Ms. Freda Miriklis, Co-Chair
Jindal Stainless Ltd.- Brigadier Rajiv Williams, Corporate Head of Corporate Responsibility
International Finance Corporation- Ms. Carmen Niethammer, Employment Lead for Gender Secretariat
MAS Holdings- Ms. Shanaaz Preena, Director, Women-Go-Beyond/Women’s Advocacy
Université de Saint-Boniface- Ms. Maureen Kilgour, Associate Professor in the School of Business Administration
University of St. Gallen- Ms. Gudrun Sander, Director for Diversity and Management Programs
The frames for the WEPs CEO Leadership Awards are uniquely-designed by artisans from the village of Croix-Des-Bouquets in Haiti. Artisans in this village have a long-standing tradition, dating back to the 1940's, of creating art from steel oil drums. Designs are drawn out in chalk and then hand-cut and hand hammered, with no electrical tools whatsoever. Maiden Nation, an organization that empowers women through entrepreneurship, worked with the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund to organize an Artisan Business Network, led by women, to help the gifted artisans of Haiti sell their goods in the global market. These frames were created within that network, which is supported by Maiden Nation, Inter-American Development Bank and other international partners.The UN Olive Branch and WEPs Award language were incorporated into traditional Haitian folk patterns. Each frame is uniquely created and made expressively for this business Award. The artisans are incredibly proud to have their work recognized through the WEPs CEO Leadership Award.