How UBS Is Promoting Gender Equality—Starting With Its Own Leadership Team

Campaign focuses on better serving female clients

Joss Stone talks about gender equality in UBS's new ad campaign.

In 2015, UBS launched a long-term brand campaign focusing on better serving its female clients. The campaign has so far served up some powerful work, including a portrait series of female entrepreneurs by Annie Leibovitz. For the latest iteration of the campaign, UBS is practicing what it preaches by vowing to make its own workforce more diverse.

Fifty percent of the UBS Americas leadership team members are women, but around the globe, those percentages decrease: for UBS Asia, 30 percent are women, while other markets are 25 to 27 percent women. UBS is aiming to raise those numbers over the next few years.

“We’re very committed to the diversity agenda, because studies prove that the more diverse your team is, the better you’ll perform [financially],” said Johan Jervoe, UBS’s CMO. “It’s not only the right thing to do, but there’s a business reason for it.”

This month, UBS launched its latest work, developed by a predominantly female team at Publicis: a video asking a series of questions that might plague women in the workplace.

The questions include, “Am I too bossy?” “Would I still be respected if I wasn’t?” “Should I start my own business?” “Will the investors take me seriously?” and “Will I always be the only woman at the table?”

The ad is backed with vocals by Joss Stone, who re-recorded her song “Free Me” for the campaign. Stone also appears in a behind-the-scenes video sharing her views on gender equality.

UBS Wealth Management is also launching a five-year education initiative to increase the financial confidence of women, as their research shows that 19 percent of women say they’re confident about their financial knowledge, versus 34 percent of men.

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