AT A GLANCE: We still have only one female CEO in the top 40 companies in SA

Women taking the lead
Women taking the lead

New research reveals that there aren't as many women in top positions as we had hoped there would be.

This is disheartening because, though it may appear that women are on the rise in their respective fields and professions, there are still too few represented in South Africa's top companies and organisations. 

Advaita Naidoo, the COO of Jack Hammer, says "the statistics informing the latest Jack Hammer executive report, which is due for release later this year, shows that there has been moderate progress in gender transformation at executive level, but none whatsoever at CEO level."

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“At executive level, there has been some progress with more women appointed in senior roles. But still, percentage-wise, women remain woefully under-represented. There is a glimmer of hope at non-executive board level, but clearly a lot of work must still be done,” says Advaita.

This year, the research focused on the management makeup of South Africa's top 40 listed companies, as well as a random selection of 40 other large to medium sized organisations with offices in the country (the broad 40). 

“Anecdotally, it is clear that companies want to appoint more women in senior positions," Advaita explains. "We can also see from placement data that shifts are being made at executive level. But when it comes to the most powerful position in a company, women remain conspicuously absent.”

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