Scaling Impact

Reading Time: 3 minutes

E48: Impact Investing and the Importance of Gender Diversity with Patience-Marime Ball and Ruth Shaber

This episode, Co-Authors of The XX edge unlocking higher returns and lower risk Patience-Marime Ball and Ruth Shaber talk about how women leaders act differently than men, the benefits of having a gender-diverse team, and how gender drives performance.

Patience-Marime Ball is the Founder and CEO of Women of the World Endowment and is deeply experienced in capital markets, including debt and equity financing, large-scale infrastructure investments, distressed assets (restructuring and settlements), deal structuring and negotiation, interpretation of laws and regulation, as well as investment in early-stage companies.

Ruth Shaber is the President and Founder of Tara Health Foundation where she promotes health, well-being, and opportunity for women and girls by strategically investing financial and human capital in innovative, evidence-informed programs.

Ruth partners with nonprofit organizations and other like-minded foundations, choosing financial investments that have a social impact and advance their mission. Here are a few of the topics we’ll discuss on this episode of Scaling Impact:

  • The benefits of having a gender-diverse team.
  • Investing through a gendered lens.
  • Why women leaders make a difference to financial performance.
  • How women leaders act differently than men.
  • Why gender-diverse teams outperform gender-dominant teams.
  • The rise of impact investing and how it’s scaling.
  • How gender drives performance.
  • The fintech component in leveraging impact investing.


Connect with Patience-Marime Ball:

Connect with Ruth Shaber:

Connecting with the host:


  • 3:56 – “Gender diverse teams tend to bring about more resilient companies, companies with better risk infrastructure and over time companies that actually outperform was emerging, we notice that companies with gender diverse teams coming out of that crisis were able to emerge a little quicker relative to their peers, every company suffered but those with gender diverse teams on their boards and in the C-suite navigated that crisis a little bit better.”
  • 8:14 – “When we decided that a book needed to be written about the value of gender diversity and investing we weren’t sure what we were going to find we knew from our personal experience both Patience and I have had quite a bit of experience as investors and using what is called a gender lens in making our investment decisions and we knew that in certain markets and in certain types of capital there was definitely an advantage but we weren’t sure what we were going to find when we started our research.”
  • 10:13 – “Women tend to be more collaborative, they tend to have a lower ego, they also tend to analysis risk differently and we pulled some of our research from the gambling data and we know that men are much more likely to take risks to be pressured by social influences to gamble to be more likely to be problem gamblers and if you think about the types of decisions that boards often make or particularly start-up companies there’s a lot of risk involved and women are not adverse to risk they certainly take risks but they analysis risks differently and they also tend to be more interested in the long term outcomes of the decision they make and less influenced by short term gains.”
  • 18:36 – “Who allocates capital determines its purpose and that money can do more a single dollar can do more than one thing at any given time. It can provide you incredible returns, Ruth just gave the example of the 47 base points that you can pick up just from picking the right team to manage assets but it can also do the right thing by the people on the planet what we invest in matters and what we invest in can give us profits but can also address some of the challenges that the world faces today whether its climate change, healthcare, these pandemics coming our way.”
  • 23:01 – “All investments have an impact, it’s not just some niche over here it’s every single investment decision you make, every single consumer decision you make, every time you decide what company you’re going to work for those are all impact investing decisions.”