Learn about the support you need to give your Black employees today.
MENU

New Accenture Report Sees Gap in Perceptions of Progress Towards Equality Between Leaders and Employees

New Accenture Report Sees Gap in Perceptions of Progress Towards Equality Between Leaders and Employees

"Culture Makers” are leading the way toward equal organizations, Accenture report finds.

Accenture (No. 41 on the 2020 Fortune 100 Best Companies to Work For® list) has published new research showing that leaders and employees have very different views on progress their organizations are making toward equality. If this gap in perceptions were closed, both companies and their people would benefit, Accenture concludes.

The new report, titled “Getting to Equal 2020: The Hidden Value of Culture Makers,” found that two thirds of leaders (68%) believe they create empowering environments where people have a sense of belonging, but just one third (36%) of employees agree. Trimming that gap in half could increase global profits by US$3.7 trillion, as well as lead to a more ambitious, empowered workforce, according to Accenture.

“Creating a culture of equality must be at the top of the business agenda. It starts with the belief that diversity is not only the right thing to do, but a business imperative that is treated the same as any other strategic priority,” Julie Sweet, CEO of Accenture, said in a statement.

“When a strong, equal workplace culture is prioritized, everyone benefits—and as a result, organizations unlock greater innovation and growth.” 

Sweet also spoke during Great Place to Work®’s recent 2020 For All™ Summit, where the theme was the importance of “For All Leadership.” Great Place to Work has dubbed the most inclusive leaders “For All Leaders.” Our own research has found these leaders stand out for traits including humility, a focus on purpose and constant learning—as well as outstanding business results.

Accenture’s latest report discovered leaders who are very much in keeping with “For All Leaders.” The report identifies “Culture Makers” as leaders who have a heightened commitment to building equal cultures. These leaders also understand that factors such as pay transparency, family leave and the freedom to be creative help employees thrive. 

Culture Makers account for just 6 percent of all leaders Accenture surveyed. But they are a bold, outspoken, high-performing group. They are much more likely to have spoken out on a range of workplace issues, including gender equality (52% vs. 35% of all leaders) and sexual harassment/discrimination (51% vs. 30%).

They also represent a more gender-balanced group compared to the broader group of leaders surveyed (45% women vs 32% of all leaders, respectively). What’s more, 68% of them are millennials, compared to 59% of all leaders.

These leaders also understand that factors such as pay transparency, family leave and the freedom to be creative help employees thrive.

Strikingly, their organizations’ profits are nearly three times higher than those of their peers.

Accenture’s report also offers steps to help close perception gaps and make progress toward an equal culture—one that benefits everyone and enables leaders to evolve their strategies to meet changing needs.

Bold leadership, comprehensive action and an empowering environment are “proven anchors for creating a culture of equality,” Accenture concludes.

Read Accenture’s recommendations – including how to encourage and cultivate Culture Makers – in the full report here. Learn more about ways that your organization can measure employee engagement, as well as learn how to have your company Get Certified™ by Great Place to Work.


Ed Frauenheim