Co-op and mutual insurers more likely to have gender-diverse senior leadership, says ICMIF

Of ICMIF’s 201 member organisations, 49 have a female CEO at the head of the organisation

The International Co-operative and Mutual Insurance Federation (ICMIF) has revealed that 25% of its members are led by women.

According to recent research by the Swiss Re Institute, women represented about a fifth of re/insurance company executives in 2019 and only 10% of CEOs. Swiss Re’s research also found that a gender-diverse senior leadership team is associated with return on equity (ROE) outperformance in (re)insurance companies.

The report suggests that re/insurance companies use measurable gender-specific hiring and promotion goals, and support for women with career aspirations at all levels, including tools such as executive development programmes for women that help to create a pipeline of future leaders.

Of ICMIF’s 201 member organisations, 49 have a female CEO at the head of the organisation: 10 in the Asia and Oceania region; 17 in Europe; 13 in Latin America; one in Africa; and eight in the North American region.

ICMIF chief executive Shaun Tarbuck said on International Women’s Day: “The high percentage of woman at the top of many co-operative and mutual insurers within the ICMIF membership is no surprise. Our business model gives high importance to the development of people in all their diversity. This is also borne out by the positive diversity we are seeing taking part in our virtual events currently and also in earlier face-to-face conferences held by ICMIF in previous years.

“Our business model recognises the richness of diversity, including gender diversity. The women leading our member organisations tell me they are able to grow within co-operative and mutual organisations without constraints.

“They don’t experience the so-called “glass ceiling” and say they feel highly respected in their function by colleagues. Gender balance is essential for businesses and communities to work and this International Women’s Day I am proud to say that here at ICMIF we will continue to do all we can towards truly making a positive difference for women, staying true to this year’s theme of Choose to Challenge.”