Finance sector encouraged to improve attitudes towards flexible working

Businesses in the financial sector have been encouraged to change their attitudes towards flexible working schemes in order to improve the balance of male and female executives.

A new report by the Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) has suggested that there may be a culture within the sector wherein flexible workers are seen as lazy. It was claimed that these attitudes could be preventing progress within the banking industry.

The report, featured on, says: “There is a presenteeism culture in banking, which rewards attendance over output and presents a major barrier to implementing effective flexible working.

“Banking is not viewed as a meritocracy where the best rise to the top. Clear criteria for ranking employees on output rather than hours, and performance excellence rather than connections, will benefit the business by rewarding and developing top talent.”

According to, the ILM carried out a survey of almost 1,000 City institutions and found that just nine per cent of female respondents occupied executive roles, compared to 21 per cent of men. It was concluded that attitudes towards flexible working was one of the barriers preventing women from excelling in top jobs.

The report could prove useful for the vast number of employers in the banking sector who have claimed they would like to see more women in executive positions.


I’m Mary Cummings, a ghostwriter, collaborator and all round word doctor. I help business owners write and publish business books; I'm also passionate about helping creative freelancers find work that they love - their work sweet spot with work on their terms, projects they love and clients who are a dream to work for.

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