Achieving diversity through action

WCM's Women in Leadership Network (WIL) brings the industry's senior leaders together to work collaboratively on important initiatives to advance gender diversity in corporate leadership. In addition to building a strong network of senior leaders, WIL aims to:

WCM's Women in Leadership Network (WIL) brings the industry's senior leaders together to work collaboratively on important initiatives to advance gender diversity in corporate leadership. In addition to building a strong network of senior leaders, WIL aims to:

Women Profile

Strengthen the public profile of women leaders

Equal

Promote the business case for gender diversity among senior leaders

Increase

Increase the numbers and impact of women in senior management and on boards

Pipe

Enhance the pipeline of women ready for senior leadership ranks

0%

of all board seats of TSX-listed companies are held by women

0%

of TSX-listed companies have female CEOs

0%

of C-suite executives at Canada’s 100 largest publicly traded corporations are women

WIL

Improving gender diversity on boards leads to stronger thought and leadership styles, better financial results, access to a wider talent pool and ultimately higher-quality boards. Studies show that organizations experience the greatest benefits of diversity when they have between 40% and 60% female representation. Sadly, we have a long way to go. Here is where we stand globally:

14%

Canada

23%

Usa

25%

Australia

28%

UK

42%

France

45%

Norway

WCM Board-Ready Directory

View our directory of Canadian board-ready women - a resource for Board Chairs, senior leaders and recruiters to identify and locate women who are eminently qualified to sit on public, private, and not-for-profit Boards of Directors.

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MORE ABOUT WCM'S WOMEN IN LEADERSHIP NETWORK

WIL’s members are active in many dialogues and events across the country to increase pressure on corporate Canada to drive change.

Despite overwhelming evidence of the strong business case for diversity in leadership, along with the good intentions of business leaders and government, we have made little progress. In corporate Canada today, we remain frustratingly far from reaching gender parity. In fact, at our current pace, we remain some 200 years from achieving parity. Women remain underrepresented throughout our industry's talent pipeline, and their presence dwindles as they rise through the ranks, and although we continue to make small improvements with each year, the progress is too slow. In 2017, women filled only 26% of vacant board positions, meaning 74% of vacant board positions were still filled by men. 

The risks of this reality are simply too great to be accepted. It is time for a concerted approach that will leave gender parity as a legacy to the next generation. 

Joining WCM is a vote for diversity, inclusion, equality and change.

Join our movement to ensure gender parity for future generations.

Join Now

Ekta Mendhi

Co-Chair, Women in Leadership

Senior Director, Wealth Management Strategy, CIBC

Ekta Mendhi

Co-Chair, Women in Leadership

Senior Director, Wealth Management Strategy, CIBC

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Why I'm involved in WCM:

While at business school, a scholarship and mentors from WCM helped build my knowledge, experience and confidence. I saw the career-enhancing impact WCM can have, and have been committed to furthering its mission ever since. In my early years as a volunteer, I led initiatives for our University Connections Committee and was gradually entrusted with the responsibility for the advancement of senior women in the industry to the highest levels of leadership, and helping place some of our finest, on major corporate boards.


Professional experience:

I bring several years of experience in financial services and management consulting. I have global financial services experience, with leading banks in emerging and developed markets, across retail banking, wealth management and investment banking. In my work as a management consultant, I have advised leading Canadian financial institutions in the areas of corporate growth strategies, M&A, profitability and portfolio optimization, operational efficiency and innovative business models. In my previous role, I served as Chief of Staff to the Managing Partner (CEO) of Deloitte's Assurance and Advisory business.


I am now Senior Director, Strategy at CIBC, leading the development and operationalization of the Bank's Wealth Management strategy.


I hold a BCom. with Honours in Economics and an MBA from highly regarded universities in India and an MBA from the Rotman School of Management, where I also received the prestigious Women in Capital Markets Heather L. Main Memorial Scholarship and the J. Michael Toohey Memorial Scholarship for outstanding leadership ability, among several other recognitions and awards.

Shoghig Kulidijian

Co-Chair, Women in Leadership

Director, Institutional Sales - Canada Institutional, Russell Investments Canada Limited

Shoghig Kulidijian

Co-Chair, Women in Leadership

Director, Institutional Sales - Canada Institutional, Russell Investments Canada Limited

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Why I'm involved in WCM:

I got involved with WCM, because I believe in the cause. I believe we need to encourage and support one another to help promote the efforts of women past, present and future. Elevating each other's status while looking to create a future of complete gender equality.


Professional Experience:

Shoghig Kulidjian's most recent role was at CIBC Wholesale Banking where she held the position of Executive Director, Head of Middle Markets, Equity Markets. Previous to this role Shoghig was Head of Client Strategy and Analytics, as well as managing the Commission Management group, overseeing the strategy of the business. She has 20 years' experience in the industry, both on buy side and other large sell side institutions.

Shoghig was recently the co-head for the Run for the Cure campaign as the CIBC Line of Business Champion for the Wholesale Banking Division.

What is your reaction to the fact that the 61st session of the Commission on the Status of Women will be chaired by a man?