The average income of middle-class households in the U.S. grew only by 1.3% over the past 40 years and this growth is entirely attributable to women. They accounted for 90% of income gain from 1979 to 2018. Women’s income rose from $57,420 to $69,559. In addition, women also contributed $2 trillion to the U.S. economy. And if the intersectional gender gap is closed, they could add another $789 million and help expand the American economy by a total of $2 trillion.
Here are some suggestions on how to implement stakeholder capitalism and maximize the economic potential of women.
1. Focus on long-term value creation. This means accepting regulatory and fiscal policies that protect and support stakeholders. An example of this is increased investment in childcare infrastructure that would boost the labor force participation of women. Other examples are overhauling the minimum wage law and endorsing pay equity legislation.
2. Tracking and public disclosure of diversity reports. Companies should stop fearing diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) data and start considering it as a roadmap to guide them forward. DEI data can help organizations determine what works and what doesn’t.
3. Lobbying for gender-based budgeting. Instead of lobbying for weak taxation and lax regulation, corporations should urge policymakers to endorse gender-based budgeting. Not using the gender lens in budgeting would result in an inefficient and inequitable allocation of government resources.