Gender Diversity Assignment


1.1 Self-reflection. 3

1.2 Short Literature Review on Gender Equality. 5

What do people want?. 5

How to run a Sustainable Business by Dean of Harvard Nitin Nohria. 6

United Nations 2030 Global Sustainability Goals: 7

Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all 7

Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls. 9

1.3 Application Exercise. 10

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Triple Bottom Line (TBL) Accounting using Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) (2015) Framework. 10

G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines on Diversity: 11

Conclusion. 13

References: 15



1.1 Self-reflection


Upon Request.

1.2 Short Literature Review on Gender Equality

What do people want?


According to Workplace Gender Equality Agency (2012), the aim of gender equality in the workplace is to achieve broadly equal outcomes for women and men, not exactly the same outcome for all individuals. To achieve this requires:

  • workplaces to provide equal pay for women and men for work of equal or comparable value
  • the removal of barriers to the full and equal participation of women in the workforce
  • access to all occupations and industries, including leadership roles, for women and men
  • elimination of discrimination on the basis of gender, particularly in relation to family and caring responsibilities for both women and men.

Alderfer, (1972) explained how people are motived by three needs; Existence, Relatedness, and Growth. According to workplace gender equality each person in the work place should have equal opportunity to achieve equal outcomes. But is there a difference in what motives genders? And does that reflect negatively in annual reports on gender?  Does having equal numbers of male or female actually discriminate against what people want by forcing them everyone to be the same?

From the motivation mapping worksheet Inglis (2015) listed the following motivations when trying to work out how to motive staff:

  • Working conditions
  • Salary, incentives, bonuses
  • Relationship with workers
  • Pride in organisation
  • Achievement
  • Status
  • Recognition
  • Responsibility
  • Relationship with supervisor (or governance board if it’s a CEO)
  • Meaningful work
  • Security
  • Work/life balance
  • Challenging work
  • Advancement
  • Learning and growth


These are the questions each gender should be asked individually and regularly with equal opportunity for all. It is the responsibility of the manager to then meet the business needs to with the aspirations of the individuals irrespective of gender. The business need drive the business cases and opportunities. Culture and therefore gender equality is an important aspect of a successful sustainable business.

How to run a Sustainable Business by Dean of Harvard Nitin Nohria


According to Nohria (2003) what really works in achieving better than 90% chance of sustaining superior business performance is having a strong grasp of business basics. The formula is 4+2 where you choose four primary and then two secondary practices

Four primary practices:

  • Strategy
  • Execution
  • Culture
  • Structure

Two secondary practices:

  • Talent
  • Innovation
  • Leadership
  • Mergers and Partnerships


From this list we can clearly see Nohria (2003) has culture as a primary practice needed to maintain a sustainable competitive advantage in the global economy.

Taking culture as seriously as operations is considered important. “but promoting a fun environment isn’t nearly as important as promoting one that champions high-level performance and ethical behaviour”, (Nohria 2003). “Thomas (1992) proposed that managers needed to move beyond affirmative action for racial groups and women if they wanted to achieve competitive advantage.” Kramar (2012).

Culture is communicated down from the CEO and board of directors using company values. Correct values will promote consistent behaviours across the company. Diversity in people will help each part of the company understand of their diverse customer base.

“Managing diversity is an idea whose time has come. More and more corporations and organisations are awakening to the fact that a diverse workforce is not a burden, but their greatest potential strength – when managed properly” (Thomas 1992).

United Nations 2030 Global Sustainability Goals:

According to Sustainable Development United Nations (2015):

Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all

Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls


Goal 4. Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all

4.1 By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys complete free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes
4.2 By 2030, ensure that all girls and boys have access to quality early childhood development, care and pre-primary education so that they are ready for primary education
4.3 By 2030, ensure equal access for all women and men to affordable and quality technical, vocational and tertiary education, including university
4.4 By 2030, substantially increase the number of youth and adults who have relevant skills, including technical and vocational skills, for employment, decent jobs and entrepreneurship
4.5 By 2030, eliminate gender disparities in education and ensure equal access to all levels of education and vocational training for the vulnerable, including persons with disabilities, indigenous peoples and children in vulnerable situations
4.6 By 2030, ensure that all youth and a substantial proportion of adults, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy
4.7 By 2030, ensure that all learners acquire the knowledge and skills needed to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development
4.a Build and upgrade education facilities that are child, disability and gender sensitive and provide safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all
4.b By 2020, substantially expand globally the number of scholarships available to developing countries, in particular least developed countries, small island developing States and African countries, for enrolment in higher education, including vocational training and information and communications technology, technical, engineering and scientific programmes, in developed countries and other developing countries
4.c By 2030, substantially increase the supply of qualified teachers, including through international cooperation for teacher training in developing countries, especially least developed countries and small island developing States


Goal 5. Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls

5.1 End all forms of discrimination against all women and girls everywhere
5.2 Eliminate all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation
5.3 Eliminate all harmful practices, such as child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilation
5.4 Recognize and value unpaid care and domestic work through the provision of public services, infrastructure and social protection policies and the promotion of shared responsibility within the household and the family as nationally appropriate
5.5 Ensure women’s full and effective participation and equal opportunities for leadership at all levels of decision-making in political, economic and public life
5.6 Ensure universal access to sexual and reproductive health and reproductive rights as agreed in accordance with the Programme of Action of the International Conference on Population and Development and the Beijing Platform for Action and the outcome documents of their review conferences
5.a Undertake reforms to give women equal rights to economic resources, as well as access to ownership and control over land and other forms of property, financial services, inheritance and natural resources, in accordance with national laws
5.b Enhance the use of enabling technology, in particular information and communications technology, to promote the empowerment of women
5.c Adopt and strengthen sound policies and enforceable legislation for the promotion of gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls at all levels


Diversity management has been seen as part of an organisation’s corporate social responsibility agenda. According to this view, organisations have an obligation to make decisions and implement actions that enhance the welfare of a range of a range of stakeholders in society as well as further the interests of the organisation (Freeman and Velamuri 2006). Kramar (2012)

Porter et al (2002) discusses the importance of competitive advantage and maximising social and economic value creation. Diversity reports signals good business practices to a larger number of investors and customers. “The more tightly corporate philanthropy is aligned with a company’s unique strategy—increasing skills, technology, or infrastructure on which the firm is especially reliant, say, or increasing demand within a specialized segment where the company is strongest—the more disproportionately the company will benefit through enhancing the context.” Porter et el (2002)

1.3 Application Exercise

Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), Triple Bottom Line (TBL) Accounting using Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) (2015) Framework

The executive level goal is to improve the triple bottom line results of the organisation. In the GRI standard the people aspect specifically reports on diversity and equal opportunity. This insight into the mind of the executives in your organisation can help with getting approval for funding. Middle management needs to be aware that a business case that included hiring staff works towards the TBL targets and also any requests that help that report can be more easily justified but all decisions fundamentally must be based on the economic benefits of any decision. This includes, risk analysis, succession planning and building the organisations core competence. In Amsterdam 18 May, 2016 there will be the fifth GRI Global Conference and it will likely review and assimilate the new UN objectives. Global Reporting Initiative (2015)



G4 Sustainability Reporting Guidelines on Diversity:


Diversity and equal opportunity Type of data Reported
LA13 Composition of governance bodies and breakdown of employees per category according to gender, age group, minority group membership, and other indicators of diversity. The percentage of employees in the gender category (female/male). quantitative
The percentage of employees in minority groups. quantitative
The percentage of employees by age group (under 30; 30-50; over 50). quantitative
The percentage of individuals within the organization’s governance bodies in the gender category (female/male). quantitative
The percentage of individuals within the organization’s governance bodies in minority groups. quantitative
The percentage of individuals within the organization’s governance bodies by age group (under 30; 30-50; over 50). quantitative



“Currently, diversity initiatives’ strongest accomplishment may actually be protecting the organization from litigation — not protecting the interests of underrepresented groups…In order to foster fair, inclusive workplaces, diversity initiatives must incorporate accountability. They must be more than “colorful window dressing” that unintentionally angers a substantial portion of the workforce. Diversity policies must be researched, assessed for effectiveness, and implemented with care so that everyone in the workplace can feel valued and supported.” Tessa et al (2016)

The colourful window dressing is one example of addressing diversity. “Powell (1993) proposed that diversity management referred to the way organisations responded to affirmative action/equal employment opportunity legislation. Organisations could either do nothing, react to the legislation in order to comply or they could be more proactive and take action to manage a diverse workforce for the benefit of the organisation.” Kramar (2012) In Telstra Sustainability report (2015) covers diversity. Regular team meetings cover diversity aspects of the GRI framework. Some of the fun ways to focus on diversity it to focus on the company values and announce customer focused initiatives that include everyone’s.

Telstra has a system called Zings to reward individuals for their achievements and use of company values.  These also put individuals and teams into the quarterly chief operation officer (COO) awards. These Zing awards can be converted to money or gifts and they are announced to the organisation and are something to be proud of. They also indicate to the business that you are a leader and that helps with future promotions.

Implications of that reward and performance management system must be managed correctly. “Organizations typically attempt to achieve diversity through a special program or a series of initiatives. These attempts at creating diversity are often poorly planned and disjointed in their implementation. At best, many of these organizations move to the pluralistic level of diversity development. More minorities are hired and eventually promoted, but they are expected to conform to the majority organizational culture. A truly diverse, multicultural work environment is never realized. These organizations become stuck in the pluralistic stage of development and fail to reap the true competitive rewards of a multicultural workforce […] Finally, the organization must ensure that the changes of the moving stage are institutionalized. This objective is accomplished by aligning the organizational policies, procedures and reward system to perpetuate the new culture” Allen (2001)

Companies with gender equality perform better

A considerable body of research suggests a link between gender equality and better organisational performance. While there are a range of reasons to explain this link, one factor is that diversity brings together varied perspectives, produces a more holistic analysis of the issues an organisation faces and spurs greater effort, leading to improved decision-making.”  (Workplace Gender Equality Agency  2012)

The Workforce 2000 Report demonstrated that by 2000 the workforce in the United States would be more heterogeneous and the report urged organisations to address workforce diversity if they were going to maintain their success (Kramer 2012).

Here at Telstra, we have five core values:

  • Show we care
  • Work better; together
  • Trust each other to deliver
  • Make the complex simple
  • Find our courage

Managers need to understand the mind of the investor and global community. The GRI framework is the guideline followed that represents the investor and global community. The united nations also have further guidelines.

Telstra uses top down goals to manage gender diversity. It seems to take the GRI framework and has an objective for hiring based on the objectives for this year’s report but it does not enforce based only on numbers otherwise this would not be a valid business case and would be based only on affirmative action. “A model has been developed which describes four stages of a proactive, positive approach to diversity management. These stages are identified as a Problem-specific Stage, the Integrated Stage which integrates diversity initiatives into a strategic management plan, the Culture Change Stage and the Inclusive Workplace Stage.” Kramar (2011).



Gender diversity in Telstra need to be assessed on both an individual basis. Each person should have the same opportunities and selection should be based on merit. Each person may have different objectives at different stages of life including all genders and it is in the manager’s and companies interest to understand and develop the individual’s competence in line with the company’s core competence. According to Kramer (2011) Corporate social responsible (CSR) has can have competitive advantage benefits and it not only to avoid concerns about legal compliance. The United nations met late 2015 and decided on new CSR and global targets for 2030. Cremer (2015) shows the impact of CSR and Volkswagen’s manipulation of CO2 emissions serious financial backlash from governments and customers. The GRI standard is serious the recommendation is that Telstra works toward improving both reporting and actions in their GRI based sustainability report.





Alderfer, C. (1972). Existence, Relatedness, and Growth; Human Needs in Organizational Settings. New York: Free Press.

Allen RS and KA Montgomery, November 2001, Applying an organisational development approach to creating diversity. Organizational Dynamics Vol 30, 149–161. <>

Cremer Andreas, 9 December 2015, VW says CO2 emissions scandal not as bad as feared, Reuters,

Inglis Susan, BUO5MGT Management Fundamentals, 2015, Motivation Mapping Worksheet, La Trobe University

Drucker, P. F. (1994, September). The Theory of Business, Harvard Business Review. Retrieved May 18, 2015, from

Global Reporting Initiative 2015, Global Reporting Guidelines G4, viewed on 31 January 2016, <>

Kramar, Robin, 3 February 2012, Diversity management in Australia: a mosaic of concepts, practice and rhetoric. Asia Pacific Journal of Human Resources, 50: p245–261 <>

Nitin Nohria, W. J. (2003, July). What Really Works. Harvard Business Review,

Porter ME and MR Kramer (2003), The competitive advantage of corporate philanthropy, Harvard Business Review. Harvard Business School Publishing Corporation, Boston.

Sustainable Development United Nations, 25 September 2015 Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, viewed 15 January 2016,

Telstra Sustainability Report, 2015, Community & Environment, viewed 31 January 2016,

Tessa L. Dover, Brenda Major, Cheryl R. Kaiser, January 04, 2016, Diversity Policies Rarely Make Companies Fairer, and They Feel Threatening to White Men, HBR,

Thomas, R. Roosevelt, 1992, Beyond Race and Gender: Unleashing the Power of Your Total Workforce by Managing, American Management Association, New York

Workplace Gender Equality Agency, 2012, About Workplace Gender Equality, Australia, viewed 25 January 2016,




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