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By Scott Anderson

Financial services industry leaders have long heard the statistics: When more women are involved in upper management, companies experience stronger financial performance and long-term success. So, it should be easy for banks to just hire and promote more women, right?

But it’s not that easy. In today’s tight labor market, it can be challenging for banks to compete with other industries like technology, healthcare and e-commerce in talent recruitment. On top of that, stereotypes of bankers reinforced through media portrayals don’t help either. 

At the American Bankers Association’s annual convention held in Chicago this past October, a surprising speaker was spotted behind the podium: Academy Award-winning actor Geena Davis. The founder of the Geena Davis Institute on Gender in Media, Davis was there to share her nonprofit’s recent research about film portrayals of women who work in banking in finance.

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