Women have an extraordinary potential to move society in the right direction… but the proportion of women (on boards) is still below where it should be.
We have come a long way in terms of women in leadership positions, but there is still work to be done. Gone are the days when a woman needed to have a PhD to sit on a board, even while a man did not, or where a woman was asked about her husband in an interview. However, women still hold only 20.4% of board seats in Russell 3000 companies1, and 16% of leadership positions in European companies2.
Change is slow, but regulation is playing a critical role and the new corporate governance code3 pushes boards even further, requiring more responsibility and more diversity in general.
There are two key elements for sound decision-making: competence and information.
Even if you are deemed ‘fit and proper’ as a board member, you cannot be ‘competent’ in all topics. Additionally, you will not have the same detailed knowledge of the company’s operations as management.
Yet you will be accountable for the decisions you make as a board member.
So, ensure you:
Boards are meant to be diverse – in gender, age, competence, etc. – and the participation of women on boards is improving.
However, while we want participation to increase, there are also qualified people on boards that cannot just be kicked out.
You can still take action by being proactive and looking at companies’ boards:
Don’t forget to think about the next generation.