His new radical idea is that companies need to start investing in women. Not just because it's the nice thing to do, not just because it would make the office more interesting, but because it will benefit them to do so.
The United States is notoriously behind other nations when it comes to leadership in almost every kind of work. It's not because women aren't working, either. Women outnumber men in the work force. There are probably a number of factors contributing to women not leading, but I'd like to think we could eliminate a few of them.
Sometimes, this happens because of discrimination, deliberate or not. Sometimes, you can trace women's lack of leadership to a culture that says science and math are unfeminine. Sometimes, family needs win. Sometimes an unforgiving corporate culture assumes the stay-at-home spouse will deal with the children. Sometimes self-doubt prevents women from taking those steps into the unknown.
A few years ago, Bill Gates famously told an audience that Saudi Arabia could never expect to become a top nation in technology as long as they weren't using the talents of half their population.
It only makes sense. Half the innovation, deal-making, discovery, and creativity is held back from leadership. Even though the field is theoretically wide open, very few women are CEOs or film directors or marketing executives or computer scientists.
But if more women in charge, I think things would change. How would women in advertising present the female body differently than men do? How would child care products change if more women developed those products? What family-friendly changes would women introduce to the corporate culture? How much more profit would companies make if women marketed to women, who are responsible for 80% of purchasing decisions?
How do you think things might change if there were more women in leadership positions?