[L to R]: Karen Bozic, CEO of Craveable Brands, Kerri Wane, CEO of San Churro, and Nicola Steele, CEO of Krispy Kreme.

Why these CEOs are firm believers in flexible work arrangements

Flexible work arrangements bridge certain gaps for women to gain more equal opportunities.

The CEOs of San Churro, Craveable Brands, and Krispy Kreme are big believers in flexible work arrangements especially since they help bridge the gap between unique challenges faced by women in the workplace.

For example, a report by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency revealed that 70% of all carers are engaged in the labour force but only 58.8% of primary carers are in paid employment. This number drops drastically as the number of caring hours increases.

“The new watch out is flexible working, which I love. We enable flexible working at Craveable and we are mindful of ensuring that women still remain visible. In particular, flexible work suits women with caring responsibilities and we just have to make sure we adjust to that and don’t go backwards from a visibility and presence perspective,” Karen Bozic, CEO of Craveable Brands said.

READ MORE: Why shaping women leaders of tomorrow should come from the women of today

Karen also believes it is vital to create more opportunities for women. She does this through her work with Chief Executive Women, particularly their scholarship committee to establish scholarships for women. She also does a lot of mentoring which she finds very rewarding.

Nicola Steele, CEO of Krispy Kreme added that businesses should be more supportive of women leaders wanting to build a career whilst still juggling responsibilities at home by enabling part-time or flexible working arrangements.

READ MORE: 3 roadblocks to achieving gender equality, according to Krispy Kreme boss
“It was interesting to read that only 7% of manager roles are part-time. And the reality is if women want to raise a family, they may take a [leave of absence] from their career. And there’s still a lot of discrimination that still exists around that. For the industry in general, we first need to think about how we help support the equality at home,” Nicola said.

At Krispy Kreme, they made it part of their core as a company to ensure that employees are comfortable proposing working arrangements that will work for them without affecting their productivity.

Meanwhile, San Churro’s CEO Kerri Wane doesn’t sit with a viewpoint that employees need to come in five days a week to be productive.

“We want to maintain great flexibility for our team [because] it stimulates larger participation from across all the different work groups that we have,” Kerii said.

READ MORE: QSRs are best positioned to address gender equality challenges

One specific initiative that Kerri believes has a positive impact on their workforce productivity is flexible working arrangements, particularly at the Support Office, with a handful of roles now 100% remote. Flexibility has improved participation and lowered turnover, ensuring that employees learn and grow. This, together with the San Churro’s leave policies, and gender and diversity inclusion policies create an inclusive environment for employees.

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