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Recruiting Women Into the Ranks of Financial Leadership

Financial Organizations may need to take a creative approach to establish a more gender-inclusive recruitment process.


USA Today | August 30, 2018



The USA Today article, “Recruiting Women Into the Ranks of Financial Leadership," featured Russell Reynolds Associates Consultant Heather Hammond and quoted her insights on successfully recruiting women into financial leadership roles. The article is excerpted below.

“There's never been a better time for women who are working in finance,” declares Heather Hammond, the area manager of the New York and Stamford offices of executive search consulting firm Russell Reynolds Associates.

Because of the spotlight trained on the talent shortage in finance and an ever-increasing recognition of the innovation-driving boost that diversity can bring to a business, “there is a mandate by our clients to ensure that our slates [of candidates] are diverse,” Hammond shares. “Companies are saying to us: ‘we want at least half of the slate to include women.' "

Expanding the parameters

In order to deliver on this demand, however, Hammond conveys to her clients that the traditional boundaries of executive search may be too narrow to bring in that diverse pool of talent they desire. “The only way to push for a gender-balanced slate of candidates is by finding and pursuing creative solutions,” she explains. “If you can't find women in the obvious paths and the obvious areas, you need to get more creative around where you find them. For example, if we're doing an investment banking search and the ranks of investment banks are thinly populated with senior women, then we collectively need to go outside those general boundaries to find senior women in places like corporate development or in equity research.”

A key aspect of this expansion, Hammond adds, is committing to a new mindset about the search so that candidates found outside of traditional parameters don’t feel like a “plan B.”

To read the full article, click here.

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Recruiting Women Into the Ranks of Financial Leadership