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Deloitte CEO-elect is optimistic about women in business

In two days Catherine Engelbert will become CEO of Deloitte and thus the first woman to head a major consulting and accounting firm. In an interview with CNBC's "Squawk on the Street" on Monday she was upbeat on women in the workplace.

"I see a lot of our clients making strides in women empowerment and economic empowerment so I'm really optimistic about where we are going," she said.

"My becoming the CEO is a testament to our long commitment to diversity inclusion. And I intend to really focus and really pay that forward for our future diverse leaders at Deloitte."

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Cathy Engelbert, Deloitte
Source: Deloitte
Cathy Engelbert, Deloitte

Engelbert also said that her firm "will probably hire 24,000 people over the next year" as confidence in the economy grows in the U.S.

"I think there's definitely an uptick in U.S. jobs," she said. "But the wage issue not being where we all want it to be, that's an issue of building skill sets for higher-wage jobs and driving that into our economy."

On a rapidly changing global economic environment, Engelbert said that companies are "trying to balance all of these challenges and make sure they grow and grow profitably."

"I think they are really focused on evolving with this pace of change, using technology as an enabler instead of making it disrupt the business," she added. "Those companies that figure it out quickly, those are the ones that are going to get ahead. "