Volvo Ocean Race has just changed the rules to one of the world's toughest ocean sailing races to attract some of the world's best female sailors.
In the next race, the boats will have to one of the following combinations:
7 men only or;
7 men + 1 or 2 women or;
7 women + 1 man or 2 men or;
5 women + 5 men or;
11 women only
I think everybody is agreed that a seven-person crew will more than likely be the worst off. So there is very little option for the men, but to invite the women onboard.
This is great news for those crews and sailing.
Moreover, this is relevant for those land-based organisations, corporates and other male dominated teams.
Because there is endless published research on decision-making, and we see it when we run our performance workshops, that mixed gender teams fair better than same-sex teams when it comes to the quality of the solution or decision or outcome.
So this is great news for sailing, however tough the race is.
Who says women aren't tough?
Also, it is great for high-quality team decision-making, especially in an amazing and historic race such as the Volvo.
Please see the article I wrote about women and decision-making. Read more
Well done Volvo and the race committee!
The rules of Volvo Ocean Race of the race will limit all-male teams to seven sailors, one fewer than in 2014-15, and give mixed teams a significant numerical advantage. [Potential crew combinations: 7 all-male; 7 men + 1 or 2 women; 5 men + 5 women; 7 women + 1 or 2 men; 11 all-female] Teams will be able to change their crew combinations from leg to leg in the race – but as in previous editions, teams will be required have the same crewmembers on board for the In-Port Race as either the previous or the subsequent offshore leg – with the exception of a team that is racing offshore with seven males, which can add an additional female for the in-port racing.