When a young girl looks up on the wall at a poster of our nation’s leaders, forty-four male faces stare back at her. Why is this? Do people not think that women have the capacity and intelligence to preside over our country?
Actually, facts prove quite the contrary. A 2014 survey of approximately 16,000 leaders and their co-workers found that women had a 54.5% leadership effectiveness rating, as compared to 51.80% of men. The same study examined more specific categories such as “takes initiative”, “displays integrity and honesty”, “inspires and motivates others”, and “collaboration and teamwork”, and found that women received an average of scores 3.9% higher than men. When the American Psychological Association released a study analyzing what leaders say about themselves versus what colleagues say, women were rated as significantly more effective than men overall, as well as in business and educational organizations and leadership level. (For the record, men self-rated themselves as much more valuable than their female counterparts).
A twelve-year study led by Quantopian discovered that, when compared to the male-dominated S&P 500 enterprises (an American index of the 500 largest U.S. stocks), female-run Fortune 1000 companies produced equity returns 226% better than those from corporations led by men.
According to the American Journal of Political Science, women also achieve more in Congress than men. Females secured an average of $49,000,000 more per year for their districts than male legislators, sponsored 3 more bills and co-sponsored 26 more bills per session, and bills they introduced survived deeper into the legislation process.
Aside from all the facts and percentages, perhaps the greatest outcome of putting a female president in office would be inspiring young women and paving the way for future leaders. The year 2020 marks a century since the 19th Amendment was passed – the bill that gave women the right to vote in America. This marked a turning point in U.S. history, and it’s only fitting that we continue the progress and reach for a day when presidential pronouns are not limited to “he” and “him”. Not only that, more than 112 women currently serve in Congress, a significant increase from the previous record of 107 female representatives. Most every girl grows up being told that she can be whatever she wants, but never truly believes it. These advancements are only the beginning to proving that one day, perhaps sooner than we expect, a young woman can look up to a female president and truly think to herself, “one day, that can be me.”