Lars Engström, a trained psychologist and a senior partner with the Swedish consultant company Edcolby AB, speaks about his expriences of blogging about female empowerment at MARC (Men Advocating Real Change). Men who really want change..for women. Equality is not about men and women but about human rights. Lars Engström is also highly in favor of quotas but also that there is not one single solution to this problem. Ursula Schwarzenbach, Chief Diversity Officer for Daimler (an industry referred to as male, pale and stale), has a goal: 20% of women leaders by 2020. That is a challenging aim in an industry that is male dominated. While introducing this diversity program, men are very supportive at the beginning, however to increase the percentage by 1% per year, every third promotion needs to be women. This is challenging as finding the right women for the job is not easy. However, top manager incentives are directly linked to the top management bonuses. When top managers don't fulfill the diversity rate, the annual bonus will be cut by 10%. Since then, finding the right women was not an issue anymore. The problem was the structure and empower women also means to incorporate men in reaching those goals. Both agree that in order to change, both genders need to cooperate. That means also to give your mal friends books about gender equality to read up. For change, we also need a permanent organization that implements change more than within a project team. The discussion spreads to the audience: One women reports her two experiences that women give up because making career is just so stressful and tiring. So, is the goal to fix the workplace instead of trying to fix the women? Lars Engström answers that change, however, needs to happen from the inside. So as a start, you might need to first play with the rules otherwise you get kicked out too easily. Ursula Schwarzenbach agrees with that. But besides, a woman also needs to stay with her habits and stay as authentical as possible.
"There is no reason to blame the men, because we made them" Ursula Schwarzenbach finishes.