Home Blog Equality and Diversity Women CEOs: why so few?
30
Dec
2009
Women CEOs: why so few?

A study by the Harvard Business Review of the leadership of the world's top performing companies found that only 29 (1.5%) were women and only 1 woman made it to the top 100.

This article speculates on the reasons why, noting that this must mean that women "still aren't treated as equals to men when it comes to high stakes positions" which I think is stating the bl***ing obvious.  The article bases its analysis on the performance of the organisation and whether CEOs have moved up within the business or are brought in as new blood.

I think the answer is more fundamental.  Firstly, there is the biological fact that women have children and this has a massive impact on our careers.  Secondly, women aren't necessarily attracted to this type of senior role, in part because they often less competitive and prefer collaboration.  We also are less focused, often putting the needs of others before ourselves - another biological influence.  Another, less palatable, reason could be that in recruitment we tend to select people like ourselves, so if most boards are male-dominated, they will tend to select men as a safer (and more comfortable?) bet.  Whatever the reason, it's really irritating to see journalists comment on what a female CEO is wearing.  What do you think?

 

 

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