top of page

Deloitte: 85 Percent of Women Surveyed Who Played Sports Say It’s Important to Their Career Success

Updated: Sep 22, 2023

Premiering during the 2023 WNBA Playoffs Presented by Google, Deloitte’s new ad campaign created by Ryan Reynolds’ Maximum Effort starring WNBA athletes aims to inspire women in sports and business.

NEW YORK, Sept. 19, 2023 — Amid record-breaking attendance and viewership of women’s sports, a new survey released today from Deloitte found that playing competitive sports often helps set women up to have successful careers. The report titled “Impact of Sports on Women’s Professional Success,” revealed that women who played competitive sports in their youth are more likely to be in leadership or management roles.

The research coincides with the 2023 WNBA Playoffs Presented by Google and the launch of a new Deloitte TV campaign centered around celebrating women both on the court and in the conference room. The new TV spots, created by Ryan Reynolds’ Maximum Effort, are set to air throughout the WNBA Playoffs starting this week. The spots feature WNBA players Diana Taurasi, Sydney Colson, Sylvia Fowles, and Theresa Plaisance and create a world where women in business are treated like the biggest stars in basketball.

The spots turn the tables on fandom, showcasing WNBA players in awe of the achievements of women in business. This twist is meant to celebrate the accomplishments of women and inspire girls to play sports and reach for the stars in whatever career they choose.

The ad spots can be viewed here:

Boardroom fantasy draft

The real MVPs of business

Front row seats to the C-suite

The winning roster

“The continued advancement of women in sports and business is essential to help create a more diverse, inclusive and equitable society,” said Jason Girzadas, chief executive officer, Deloitte US. “At Deloitte, we are deeply committed to diversity, equity and inclusion within our own organization and society and are proud of the influential leadership of women across our organization. Our collaboration with the WNBA and Maximum Effort will shine a spotlight on the incredible impact women leaders make every day as role models and changemakers shaping the next generation.”

“As we embark on the playoffs after a milestone season for the WNBA, it’s a perfect time to highlight the importance of supporting women in sports and business at all levels,” WNBA Commissioner Cathy Engelbert said. “As someone who played sports as a young girl through college, I hope that these efforts continue to inspire young girls and women to keep following their dreams in whatever career they aspire to. The league is committed to working with Deloitte, a key sponsor and WNBA Changemaker, as we collaborate and continue to support the advancement of women and girls and champion them as they rise to become the next generation of leaders.”

Deloitte has sponsored the WNBA since 2020 and is a WNBA Changemaker, helping the league with business transformation, from short-term operational planning to long-term business strategy. Over the last several years, women’s sports, in general, have not only grown their audiences and proven their value — WNBA viewership is up 21% this year over last — but also helped transform society’s view on women and gender equity.

“As a girl dad, co-chair of a Welsh women’s football team, and producer of a WNBA TV show, I want to help create a great professional environment for women. Sports is transformative and fun for both women and men, whether a career in sports is the goal or not,” said Ryan Reynolds, Co-Founder of Maximum Effort. “I am grateful to Deloitte and the hilarious WNBA stars for collaborating with Maximum Effort to create this campaign.”

Deloitte’s survey found that girls who play sports are likely to have successful careers:

• Eighty-five percent of surveyed women who played sports say the skills they developed playing sports were important to success in their professional careers — the findings are even higher among women in leadership roles (91%) and women who make $100,000 or more (93%).

• Of female respondents who make $100K+ annually and are in management or leadership roles, 69% have played competitive sports.

• Regardless of personal experience playing sports, 61% of respondents agree that girls who play sports are likely to have successful careers.

• Three-fourths of women surveyed who played competitive sports (75%) agree that girls who play competitive sports are more likely to be successful in their careers.

• According to respondents who have played competitive sports, the top skills gained from competitive sports include teamwork (69%) and leadership (41%). Other skills include managing stress and pressure (36%), problem solving (35%), and effective communication (34%).

About the survey

The online survey of 1,100 currently and previously employed Americans, age 18+, was conducted in August 2023. For more details on our survey please visit:

About Deloitte

Deloitte provides industry-leading audit, consulting, tax and advisory services to many of the world’s most admired brands, including nearly 90% of the Fortune 500® and more than 8,500 U.S.-based private companies. At Deloitte, we strive to live our purpose of making an impact that matters by creating trust and confidence in a more equitable society. We leverage our unique blend of business acumen, command of technology, and strategic technology alliances to advise our clients across industries as they build their future. Deloitte is proud to be part of the largest global professional services network serving our clients in the markets that are most important to them. Bringing more than 175 years of service, our network of member firms spans more than 150 countries and territories. Learn how Deloitte’s approximately 457,000 people worldwide connect for impact at


bottom of page