It shares its name with mythology’s greatest female warriors. It is the world’s largest online retailer. Among its 120 most senior managers, only 18 are women – none of whom report directly to the big boss.
The big boss runs the company with a select all-male group of 12 – the S Team (Senior Team), all of whom have a direct line to the big boss. Including those who report directly to the S Team, there is 132 staff in total in the top two tiers of the organisation. But 13 of these are “executive assistants” and all are women.
Out of the remaining 119 senior managers, just 18 are female – 15% of the total. Two women sit on the board of the organisation, both of whom are non-executive directors.
According to the source of this information, who asked not to be named, within this organisation “there is a strong feeling that there is a glass ceiling for women who want to progress above senior manager or director level”. The organisation “has a problem with women and it needs to change”.
The most senior woman in the organisation acts as the controller and principal accounting officer. She is named as a member of the 10-strong team of company officers, but she reports directly to the chief financial officer, not to the big boss! The organisation has stated: “We have many women in leadership roles across our global organisation, including two members of our board”.
The organisation is, of course the online retailer Amazon; infamous for, amongst other reasons, its zero-hours worker contracts and taxation issues with the British exchequer. Clearly, as the unnamed source has said, Amazon has a further issue with respect to its dearth of females in executive positions.
Then I thought of another organisation that shares its name with the mythologies of the ancient world – the Roman Catholic Church! Where are the women?
(With thanks to Juliette Garside’s article, and the unnamed source, in The Guardian newspaper)