Women in Maritime

Let’s talk about women at workplace, the maritime workplace, every single day and not just on the 8th of March.

Research indicates that senior leadership remains predominantly male, with women representing only a third of all board members. This imbalance represents a significant missed opportunity, as studies have consistently shown that diversity in the workplace, encompassing gender and culture, enhances decision-making, stimulates creativity, and fuels innovation.

Throughout the corporate hierarchy, women, particularly women of color, continue to be underrepresented. Nevertheless, there is a notable bright spot emerging in senior leadership. Since 2015, the proportion of women in C-suite roles has risen from 17 to 28 percent, with a marked improvement in the representation of women at the VP and SVP levels. While these advancements are encouraging, they remain fragile.

Progress is slower for women at the manager and director levels, leading to a weakened middle in the corporate pipeline and affecting the majority of women in corporate America. Additionally, there is a concerning trend of director-level women leaving their positions at a higher rate than in previous years, exacerbating the scarcity of women poised for top positions.

According to the LeanIn Survey 2023, despite some modest progress:

  • Women account for approximately one in four C-suite leaders, with women of color comprising just one in sixteen.
  • Women of color experience the most significant decline in representation from entry-level to C-suite positions, with their representation decreasing by two-thirds.
  • Young women exhibit notable ambition, with nine in ten women aged 30 and under aspiring to be promoted to the next level and three in four aiming for senior leadership roles.
  • Women of color demonstrate even higher ambition levels, with 96% considering their careers important and 88% aspiring to be promoted to the next level.
  • The broken rung phenomenon further exacerbates gender disparities, with men holding 60% of manager-level positions compared to women’s 40%. Consequently, fewer women ascend to director roles, resulting in a diminishing number of women at each subsequent level.

The promotion landscape remains challenging for early-career Black women, with only 54 Black women promoted for every 100 men from entry level to manager positions. Despite modest gains in previous years, the promotion rate for Black women to manager positions has regressed.

These findings also shed light on disparities experienced by various demographic groups:

  • Asian women are seven times more likely than white women and men to be mistaken for someone of the same race and ethnicity.
  • Black women are three times more likely than white women and men to engage in code-switching.
  • LGBTQ+ women are five times more likely to conceal aspects of their personal lives and over twice as likely to worry about appearing professional compared to the overall population.
  • Women with disabilities are disproportionately pressured to perform perfectly without judgment.
  • Furthermore, women who encounter microaggressions experience heightened stress levels, leading to increased burnout and contemplation of leaving their jobs. Remote work presents unique advantages for women, including fewer microaggressions and higher psychological safety levels.

Notably, both women and men see remote work as beneficial, citing fewer unpleasant interactions with coworkers and reduced pressure regarding personal appearance. Emphasizing significant flexibility in work arrangements emerges as a critical factor for the future success of companies, with half of women and a third of men highlighting its importance.

Realize your leadership potential

Executive Course for Women Leadership in Maritime

Discover how harnessing your unique leadership traits can help foster a more diverse – and more successful – organization.

Determine your strengths and weaknesses as a leader, reflect on how you have led in the past, and explore potential ways to lead in the future.

Executive Course for Women Leadership in Maritime

The course is about Women and Leadership in the Maritime industry, but it is by no means a ‘women only’ course; in fact, we would actively encourage all genders to engage with the course, as Women in the work place is a key business issue (and as you will learn, a key determinate of success), not just a ‘Women’s’ issue.

You will learn about the business case for widening the workforce to encourage a diverse and inclusive environment and the benefits this brings – based on vigorous research and contemporary data.

Also covered is the building blocks of leadership essentials, including the importance of development, together with understanding the barriers, bias and difficulties Women face in the work place and more importantly – strategies to overcome them.

Meet the Instructor

Nicola Searle

Nicola Searle is fully CIPD (Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development) qualified and has over 20 years’ experience in Human Resources working across various sectors (manufacturing, commercial, public and community-voluntary) always with a strong operational focus.

Her niche is working with managers to develop their people skills including coaching them through complex issues, together with a practical and commercial approach to all areas of the HR provision.

Delivering a consultancy service in HR, Nicola works with SME’s in her local area, usually directly with the Owner and leadership team in the organisation.

Nicola keeps up-to- date in the HR field by lecturing at the University of Plymouth Business School in the following areas:  Strategic HR Management, Talent Management, Organizational Behaviour,  Managing Change,  Leadership Practice,  Entrepreneurial Thought and Action and  People Management.

This duel approach helps to provide a balance of both practical and theoretical knowledge when dealing with students or Managing Directors alike!