The goal of the Fraunhofer project "Changing Company Cultures - Avoiding Career Breaks" is to develop new approaches on the basis of a comprehensive root cause analysis to avoid career breaks among women in management positions.
As part of this, the project illustrates the importance of company culture for women's career opportunities:
(1) The reasons for the career breaks of women in management positions can be found in the company-cultural framework conditions. The results show that individual measures are not sufficient to avoid career breaks by women. In order to increase the proportion of women in management positions, a comprehensive change in company culture is required.
(2) The company-cultural factors identified as causes for career breaks by women are evident in varying degree from company to company. Not all companies are confronted by the same problem situation, but rather face culture-specific challenges. Four ideal-typical cultural patterns were identified. Their characteristics define the specific challenges to achieve the objective of "more women in management positions". As such, the four cultural patterns also provide starting points for the organisational-specific recommendations for action.
The project was conducted by the Fraunhofer Society in collaboration with nine partner companies: Allianz Deutschland AG, BASF SE, Bayer AG, Bosch-Group, Daimler AG, Deutsche Bahn AG, EADS, Infineon Technologies AG and Microsoft.
Kaiser, Simone; Hochfeld, Katharina; Gertje, Elena; Schraudner, Martina (2013):
Changing Company Cultures - Avoiding Career Breaks; Company Culture Reasons for the Career Breaks of Women in Management Positions - Results of a Study in Nine Large-Scale Enterprises in Germany. Fraunhofer, Stuttgart.