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Which women’s network is the right one for you?

A women's network can offer a wealth of networking opportunities.
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Click here for the guide

Female leadership in Germany is still playing catch-up

Women in leadership positions in business are still strongly outnumbered by their male colleagues. According to the Federal Statistical Office (Destatis), the percentage of women in leadership positions in Germany in 2020 was just 28%, putting it in the bottom third compared with other European member states. Latvia is leading the way with 47%, while Poland (44%) and Sweden (42%) also posted high rates.

28 %
women in leadership positions in Germany
47 %
women in leadership positions in Latvia
44 %
women in leadership positions in Poland

In order to increase the proportion of women in management and leadership positions, a law was passed in Germany in August 2021 setting mandatory quotas for the commercial and public sectors. In the private sector, for example, companies that are both publicly traded and subject to parity codetermination (equal representation) are subject to a minimum participation requirement for their executive board. If the board has more than three members, the company must appoint at least one woman and one man.

But it’s going to take more than statutory requirements; if women are to have the opportunity to hold their own in business and commerce, we need more dialog, support, and opportunities. Women’s networks are a way to build relationships with like-minded people, so they can offer each other support and encouragement.

Women’s networks: Solidarity to overcome outdated structures

There are many different reasons why the proportion of women in companies is still so low, including obstacles to balancing work and family as well as conservative corporate structures. That makes it even more important for businesswomen and prospective female founders to have the right contacts when it comes to advancing their individual careers.

In the past, many well-known business networks were led by men or designed with them in mind, while women tended to have subordinate roles. Although the first women’s networks appeared in the early 20th century, with the aim of proactively tackling the issue of gender equality, these networks tended to be more informal and locally based. More recently, the opportunities created by the Internet and social media have made networking much easier. The call for greater equality, female empowerment, and diversity within companies is getting louder and louder. As a result, more and more women are coming together in networks – both industry-based and cross-industry – so they can support each other.

Existing women’s networks are proving to be diverse, so they appeal to different target groups. Our free guide describes some of the major women’s networks.

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Advantages of women’s networks

Women’s networks are safe places to talk about career opportunities, job experiences, and contacts, as well as tough issues such as sexism, harassment, and workplace bullying. At the same time, career networks for women frequently have overarching objectives in cultural, political, and social areas. Being a member can therefore have several immediate positive aspects.

Find out which women’s network is the right one for you

Along with the most important facts about networking, our free guide gives you useful information about the most inspiring national and international women’s networks. Be sure to check it out!

Click here for the guide