In January 2018, Nucleus signed the Women in Finance Charter and pledged to improve the gender balance in our senior leadership team by setting a target of no less than 40% female representation by the end of 2020.
We recognised that while we have a good gender balance across our team, we have work to do to grow the number of women in leadership roles. A core component of our people strategy is to ensure we're nurturing an inclusive and inspiring working environment to attract and retain the best people. However, we still have work to do and believe by starting with a specific focus on gender will be a catalyst for other under-represented groups.
By signing the charter, we commit to the following:
I will be the member of the senior executive team who is responsible and accountable for gender diversity and inclusion.
Supporting the progression of women into senior roles by setting internal targets
Publishing our progress annually against these targets in reports on our website
Ensuring a proportion of variable pay for our executive team is linked to delivery against our diversity targets.
Our gender diversity targets
When we signed up to the charter in January 2018, we had 18% female representation. As of 30 June 2019, we have 35% female representation in senior management. We believe we are on track to meet our charter target of no less than 40% female representation in our most senior roles by 31 December 2020. You can read more about our commitment to inclusion and diversity at Nucleus.
We define senior leadership roles as the board, our executive team and senior management. These are our key decision-making groups, so more balanced representation here will result in meaningful change.
It’s a small group: we have eight board members, seven executive committee members (two of whom also sit on the board) and an additional nine people who represent major areas of our business. We have no desire to make either of these groups bigger than they need to be to help us run our business well, and our people turnover is low. We achieve our ambitions by setting successive targets - so once we meet this one, we’ll set another.
In the longer term, we aspire to equal gender balance.
Our senior accountable executive is me. I’m (vaguely) healthy, white, and male. I realise the potential for irony here, however this is in-keeping with the charter’s more detailed recommendations to avoid this being seen as a siloed issue for the people function or a problem about women for women to solve.
This isn't a box-ticking exercise for us, this is about being future relevant and durable. I strongly believe that broader diversity leads to innovation and better decision making. Diverse teams have been proven to demonstrate greater retention, more commitment and better collaboration, and creating a better balance can only lead to sustainable growth for Nucleus, better service for clients and a better future for women in financial services. Too often we focus on the direct skills for the job and overlook the team angle. Even if a female is 10 per cent less directly capable and a team of six becomes 2 per cent stronger by being more diverse, the female should get the job.
By signing this charter on behalf of Nucleus, the pledge is very personal. I have a five-year-old daughter and when she grows up and joins the world of work, I want her to be viewed as capable and valuable as her male colleagues. Hopefully by then her gender won't be a consideration at all. Similarly, I'd hope our young son grows up to have exactly the same view of the world.
Please judge us on our results and do let me know your feedback
David Ferguson, founder and CEOLearn more about diversity and inclusion at Nucleus from Kirsty Lynagh, Chief people officer