Pepperdine University researchers have some advice for business leaders looking for an edge in precarious economic times: Promote more women. “The correlation between high-level female executives and business success has been constant and revealing,” the researchers report in Miller-McCune (March-April 2009). They began studying gender and profitability in 2001. Most recently, in 2008, they found that U.S. companies ranked most desirable for female MBAs outperformed their industry peers in every way.
Correlation is not causation, of course, though the researchers do offer one commonsense connection: “Firms exhibit higher profitability when their top executives make smart decisions. One of the smart decisions those executives have consistently made at successful Fortune 500 firms is to include women in the executive suite—so that regardless of gender, the best brains are available to continue making smart, and profitable, decisions.”