In 2005, the founder of Booz & Company's Middle East Women’s Leadership Initiative (WLI)—the most senior woman in the region—began engaging the office’s women in a networking forum. This effort was the first in the region specific to women’s advancement. Its original goal was to bring together the few women in the Middle East and give them “soft skills” training. As the firm expanded, the focus, structure, and size of the initiative grew. Its goals have broadened from networking to developing women leaders, addressing stereotyping, and providing role models for junior women.
An excerpt of this practice was first published in the 2009 Catalyst Member Benchmarking Report.