The social movements of the 1960s paved the way to long-term change in western societies. Female students fought alongside their male colleagues for social change, teaching them to fight for their rights. They very soon noticed, however, that even their male colleagues were not automatically their allies in the fight for equal treatment. A new women's movement emerged that managed to raise awareness of issues such as female sexuality or abortion among the public at large, sparking lively debate.
Allianz started to think more about improving opportunities for women at the workplace from the mid-1970s onwards. In the March 1976 issue of the Allianz employee magazine, the editorial team presented two pages of facts and figures "all about women" to mark the Year of Women, which had, however, ended three months previously. The author wrote on the status quo, "Despite everything that has changed, it is clear that one thing certainly hasn't changed: women still have a harder time in the working world than men do. They are often at a financial disadvantage and cannot expect to enjoy the same chances of promotion. We'll have to have quite a few more "Years of the Woman" before this happens". This harsh conclusion is understandable if we consider the results of a survey conducted by the sociologist Helge Pross, one of the leading researchers on women's issues at the time, which asked board of management members, senior executives with signing authority and directors of German corporations the following question: "Do you believe that a woman could achieve the same as you can in your position?" 86 percent of those surveyed answered "No".