Sodexo has been ranked #2 for gender balance within its governing bodies among all publicly-listed companies on the SBF 120 French stock market index.
The ranking (the Palmarès de la féminisation des instances dirigeantes) is published by the French State Secretary for gender equality and the fight against discrimination, and concerns gender balance in the company’s top management.
With women making up 37 per cent of Sodexo’s Executive Committee and 54 per cent of its Board of Directors, an internal gender balance study and strong gender networks throughout the global organisation, the group says its “commitment to gender equality is at the heart of its strategy and performance”.
Sodexo surveyed 50,000 of its managers from over 70 entities as part of its Gender Balance Study, which revealed that teams with a male-female ratio of between 40 and 60 percent out-performed on financial and non-financial indicators. Sodexo’s goal is that by 2025 women will represent at least 40 percent of its senior leadership staff. To ensure that all senior executives—both men and women—understand the value placed in reaching this goal, 10 per cent of their annual bonus is impacted by their progress towards meeting it.
To reach this goal, Sodexo has established a global strategy for gender equality, in order ensure opportunities for the advancement of women. This strategy forms the basis for a number of initiatives, including inclusive workplace training, mentoring, and gender networks throughout the Group. The cornerstone of this strategy is the SoTogether advisory board, which is dedicated to promoting women’s professional advancement, and more broadly, gender equality on the global scale.
Sophie Bellon, Chairwoman of Sodexo’s Board of Directors, said: “As the largest French-based private employer in the world, we are honoured by this recognition of our progress towards gender balance within our governing bodies. It highlights our strong commitment and the scale of our collective efforts deployed to consistently promote diversity and inclusion throughout Sodexo. We believe that gender balance is essential for creativity and innovation, and ultimately drives our performance.”
Denis Machuel, CEO, Sodexo, said: “Gender diversity is essential. It is beyond a moral obligation, it’s a business imperative and differentiator. When women reach their full potential, business and society are stronger and more successful. At Sodexo, greater diversity and inclusiveness are part of a cultural transformation that requires time and humility.”