To mark the end of women’s month in Mexico we are going to look at how Mexican IR teams can effectively communicate their commitment to gender diversity to investors and analysts.
Why is gender diversity important for IR teams?
- Performance. A key role of IR is to help convince investors to buy the company’s stock, and there is plenty of evidence that companies more committed to gender diversity perform better than those that do not. According to research by McKinsey there is a “statistically significant correlation between a more diverse leadership team and financial outperformance […]. Leadership roles matter. Companies in the top-quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 21% more likely to outperform on profitability and 27% more likely to have superior value creation.” They go on to address those companies that choose not to address imbalance: “There is a penalty for opting out. […] Overall, companies in the bottom quartile for both gender and ethnic/cultural diversity were 29% less likely to achieve above-average profitability than were all other companies in our data set. In short, not only were they not leading, they were lagging.”
- ESG funds. In addition, there are more and more investment funds driven by ESG criteria, and by communicating your ESG achievements well, including gender diversity, such funds are more likely to invest in your company.
- Regulations. More and more countries are mandating diversity in boards and even in senior management positions.
- Attracting and retaining internal talent and clients.
How can Mexican IR teams communicate gender diversity on the board to investors and analysts?
Here are some of our tips for communicating gender diversity in the company with investors and analysts.
1) Use a balance of photographs of men and women in IR and marketing materials.
2) Include headshots of the board and management on your website and in other IR materials – don’t just list their names. The gender of some names is not always self-explanatory for international investors.
3) Communicate your diversity policy clearly in your annual report. Marks and Spencer does it well.
4) Publish your diversity policy on your website and make it engaging and easy to read. Coca-Cola HBC, Pepsico, Unilever and Verizon do it well.
5) Include a Diversity and Inclusion section within your ESG section of your website.
6) When holding an investor day, ensure you have a balanced panel. A panel of seven men is not acceptable.
7) Use social media and your website to publicize your support of events or movements around gender diversity and highlight what you are doing to support the cause e.g. for International Women’s Day.
8) Share events focused on diversity, e.g. the Forbes Women’s Summit, on your website and social media.
9) Attend these sorts of events mentioned above and engage with the organizers to secure a speaker/panelist spot.
10) Learn from other countries and companies (especially peers) which communicate gender diversity well.
11) Become a Bloomberg Gender-Equality Index (GEI) member company.
12) Publicize accolades and influence management to sign up to movements or campaign groups such as the 30% Club Mexico chapter.
13) Measure results so that you can see what effect difference actions are having and can adjust them if necessary.
14) Avoid gender washing and be authentic.
The Bloomberg GEI, mentioned above, is “a modified market capitalization-weighted index that aims to track the performance of public companies committed to transparency in gender-data reporting.” “It provides standardized disclosure of gender-related data, which allows companies to attract capital and talent, empowers investors to make investment decisions through a social lens and enables employees and communities to hold companies accountable for progress.” Mexican companies that are already GEI members include: Banorte, BBVA, Coca-Cola FEMSA, Televisa and Walmex. By publicly releasing detailed, consistent and comparable gender-related data, these companies are setting a new standard for data reporting and communicating their position on these issues to investors and analysts in Mexico and around the world.
The GEI measures disclosure and performance in:
- Female Leadership & Talent Pipeline
- Equal Pay & Gender Pay Parity
- Inclusive Culture
- Sexual Harassment Policies
- Pro-Women Brand
Bloomberg lists the following benefits.
Benefits for companies:
- Showcase your company’s commitment to gender equality and transparency.
- Improve your company’s reporting by aligning with an internationally accepted disclosure standard.
- Benchmark policies and performance against peers with the comprehensive GEI scorecard.
Benefits for investors:
- Identify public companies that are committed to transparent reporting and addressing gender inequality.
- Gain visibility into public companies’ gender-related social data.
- Inform your strategies through a social lens.
If you would like any further guidance on how to communicate your diversity policies, achievements etc. to investors and analysts, please get in touch and Miranda IR and Miranda ESG would be happy to help.
Contacts at Miranda Partners