Chennai, Feb 7 (IANS) Advocating more jobs for women, US ambassador Nancy Powell said Thursday that companies gain by recruiting the most talented employees irrespective of gender.
She was giving her keynote address at the 'Best Practices for Gender Diversity' conference here.
"Research shows that creating a gender-inclusive work environment yields concrete positive results," she said.
"If you systematically eliminate half of an available pool of contributors to business, government and broader society, you will also lose half of the potential.
"And that half could have included the next Bill Gates or Albert Einstein, not to mention Marie Curie or Hillary Clinton."
Powell added: "Increasing women's voices in the decision-making process is also, simply put, smart management.
"Those of you in the consumer goods and service sectors are probably well aware of analyses showing that women are estimated to control $15 trillion worldwide by 2014.
"And by 2028, women will account globally for about two-thirds of consumer spending.
"A gender-friendly workplace does not mean preferential treatment for one group over the other.
"To the contrary, good policies promoting greater diversity in the workplace work to the benefit of everyone," she added.
The one-day conference was organised by the American Chamber of Commerce, India, in association with the US consulate here.
The other speakers and panelists included Saundarya Rajesh (Flexi Careers India), David Lobo (GE India), Samik Basu (PepsiCo India), Amita Kasbekar (Deloitte Consulting), Anne Weisberg (The Future Works Institute, New York), Joginder Singh (Ford India), Aruna Jayanthi (Capgemini India), Kami Narayanan (PreMedia Global) and Franz Gastler (Yuwa-India).