We strive for gender equality and diversity in the management of all our portfolio companies and promote the hiring and empowerment of female management talent. Women today are still incredibly scarce at the top, despite all evidence pointing to a high correlation between gender diversity and improved business outcomes. In fact, a report by the International Labour Organisation states that almost three-quarters of those companies that track gender diversity in their management reported profit increases of between five and 20 percent. Considering the efforts companies make in other areas just to get an extra two or three per cent in profit, this means that gender diversity, particularly in management, should be a top priority for every company.
Ancha Saide of SolarWorks!
Ancha Saide started her professional journey with SolarWorks in November 2017, exercising the role of … well, she didn’t have a specific role, because the company was launching in Mozambique and she was looking for a challenge! The first challenges were to recruit and train all operational staff as well as set up the Call Center from scratch to the professionalization of their agents. In February 2019 she was invited to become the Director of Human Resources, an activity that has also been a great learning curve for her, being her first experience in people management.
As part of the company leadership, she recognizes and drives the importance of gender diversity in the workplace and empowerment of people. Africa as a continent has multiple diversity dimensions, hence the need to understand and manage these differences to promote effectiveness and efficiency in the workplace. Ancha says “Diversity is in our nature. Inclusion is our choice.” She recognizes that value is created when an environment is shaped to embrace unique views across gender, ethnicity, and age, and this helps building an environment that promotes a coherent sense of identity.
The lack of women in leadership can have effects in the talent pipeline. When women in junior positions do not see other women in leadership positions, they may doubt their own capabilities and fail to put themselves forward for promotion or take on additional responsibilities. Ancha’s role is to support women at all levels by providing clear and transparent pathways to advancement.