„I know and believe that women can do and be anything they want. But I also know that meaningful cultural change can’t and won’t happen when only half of the population works towards change. Men need to act, to set examples and to be role models too.“

Justin Trudeau, Canadian Prime Minister, addresses the audience at the 2016 Catalyst Awards Dinner, highlighting the inclusive behaviors that everyone can take to make positive change for women – and men – in the workplace and in all lives.

Vive la différence!

Welcome to the ThinkTank FEMALE SHIFT! Before you start asking yourself, what this is and if we really need it, continue reading for a moment.

1970-to date:

Process: For the past five decades, many people all over the world have tried to intensify the integration of women into the mainstream of politics, business, the sciences, the cultural environment or the media. The aim here has been set on achieving uniformity and equality. And while there is a considerable increase in equal opportunity, there are still large gaps to close.

Results: Despite many positive achievements, albeit mostly on an individual level, the results are not satisfactory: There is much disappointment and frustration on the female side and a feeling of boredom with the subject on the male side.

Reaction:
Slowly, there is an awareness that goals, directions, and paths could be wrong: Women will never be like men. Where they attempt to negate this, even the best copy cannot compete with the worst original.

Conclusion:
Destination and itinerary have to be re-thought, becoming more and more aware: It is precisely the gender differences that generate the much needed new solutions, not an artificially invoked egality. Therefore: Vive la différence!

2018: Gender Reloaded

  • Women make up 51% of humanity.
  • They are responsible for 80% of consumer spending.
  • All over the world, their income is increasing, contributing to a large degree to a solid consumer basis.
  • For more than a decade, results have shown that mixed teams of women and men at the top of a corporation yield more profit than companies with male monocultures.
  • Futurists point to a development called «Womanomics» (a rising influence of female thinking in the economy) and see the future of leadership in so-called “gender-heterarchies”: leadership that mirrors the diversity of the work force.

What is called for here, is the long-overdue recognition of female contributions to every branch of society. Beyond this, however, there is a new urgency to approach crises and conflicts in innovative ways. Albert Einstein’s aphorism has never been truer when we witness the emergence of new dramas almost every day and experience the bewildering helplessness with which those in charge react to them: New thinking cannot grow out of the same circumstances that caused the problems.

Women, however, have not had too many opportunities to create the problems, their brain power has so far not been in too much demand, and their socialization has created different problem-solving strategies. Women are looking for new roads, men are building railways. We are well served to remember: We need both! But, depending on the situation, the two have to be on equal footing, enjoying the same level of appreciation, and value the contact with each other – and then it is possible or even probable that they come up with creative new solutions.

Swiss Government 2010:
Didier Burkhalter, Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf, Johann N. Schneider-Ammann, Bundespräsidentin Doris Leuthard, Micheline Calmy-Rey (Vizepräsidentin), Simonetta Sommaruga, Ueli Maurer, Bundeskanzlerin Corina Casanova; for a period of more than a year, the Swiss Government consisted of four female ministers and three male ministers. In addition, the head of the Administration was a woman as well, reulting in a 5:3 “imbalance”. Switzerland survived. (Foto: admin.ch)

Diversity in action

So, it’s not a forced equalization, but a voluntary collaboration that respects and values diversity. The ThinkTank FEMALE SHIFT has created a platform for this.
Read more about it in the Mission Statement.