Top Women Programme to boost gender diversity in an technical environment
KONE, headquartered in Helsinki, Finland, is a global leader in the elevator and escalator industry with more than 52,000 employees worldwide. One of the company's strategic targets is to make KONE a great place to work and to foster a collaborative culture with a diverse workforce. Due to its high number of technical and engineering positions it’s still a challenge for KONE to drive and encourage gender diversity, especially in view of the different management layers.
Backed up by the senior management and following a Dutch government initiative on gender diversity KONE BV decided to initiate a development programme exclusively for female employees. The goal of the programme was to offer talented women within KONE the possibility to enhance their personal development and competencies in a safe environment through a professional external facilitation.
Krauthammer designed the TOP WOMEN PROGRAMME as a five days learning journey (6 x 0,5 days plus 2 consecutive days) for a group of 16 participants. The programme combined classical training elements and special learning elements and was facilitated by four different consultants.
The classroom training focused on modules such as assertiveness, men/women dynamics, underlying dynamics, negotiation skills etc. Two days were dedicated to personal branding.
Special programme elements were half a day of tree climbing, a confrontational conversation with a male counterpart, a catwalk to show ambitions and to reflect on personal behaviour through feedback and praise. Book presentations from successful business women and influencers stimulated reflection and exchange about the individual influence on career development.
Half of the women who had participated in the TOP WOMEN programme applied for new jobs within the organisation and rotated successfully. Some women were promoted into higher positions.
Besides the tangible results the programme also helped the participants on a personal level to challenge behaviours and beliefs and to find new approaches for further development.
After the tournament in 2016 an Appreciative Inquiry workshop was co-designed to reflect on the future development of the event with a positive approach.
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