Slow progress in adding more women to boards has dominated the conversation. But tips from standout companies are more likely to inspire others to take firmer action.McKinsey and Company Logo

The tone of much public discourse on the issue of women’s representation on boards has been pessimistic of late, and understandably so, given the crawl toward gender parity in the United States. Women currently hold 19 percent of board positions there, while in European countries such as France, Norway, and Sweden, where legislative or voluntary targets are in place, they hold more than 30 percent.

 

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Over the past few years, public attention has turned to the lack of women in business leadership roles. Many businesses are taking active strides to close this gap and welcome women to the table, but this shift has not gained global traction. Women are still significantly underrepresented in corporate leadership, particularly in emerging

 

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When managers and scholars talk about diversity’s impact on organizations and teams, they’re usually referring to the effects on collective accuracy and objectivity, analytical thinking, and innovativeness. On “harder” measures of financial performance,

... These companies clearly understand that board diversity is not a social issue, but is about improving their companies’ performance and enhancing their long-term sustainable value.

Mary Hartman Morris, Investment Officer, CalSTRS
Co-Chair Thirty Percent Coalition's Institutional Investor Committee.

 

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