You are here: Home Knowledge Base Society Board Diversity and Corporate Governance Solutions Executive search firms need to broaden their pool of candidates for board nominations and include women in any list of recommendations they give to clients. They should publicize this as ...
Symposium 2011

Solution for Board Diversity and Corporate Governance

The Challenge

The global financial crisis has led to demands for greater transparency in corporate practices. But less attention has been paid to whom the players should be in this new environment. Corporate boar ...

The global financial crisis has led to demands for greater transparency in corporate practices. But less attention has been paid to whom the players should be in this new environment. Corporate boards across the world generally have a predominance of male directors. Research shows a lack of diversity in terms of gender, race/ethnicity and international expertise at a time when “global” defines the business climate.

Executive search firms need to broaden their pool of candidates for board nominations and include women in any list of recommendations they give to clients. They should publicize this as an advantage of the services they offer.

There is a lack of visibility of qualified and interested women for boards. This makes both professional and self-directed searches for diverse candidates for boards more time-consuming and expensive. It is unrealistic to expect professional search firms to provide such a registry as it is a valuable asset to their practices. But other groups, such as the company director’s professional organizations, the “champions of change” and/or other women’s advocacy groups could take on this task.

Search firms are no more connected to women’s leadership networks than corporate leaders. Heidrick’s commitment to having a woman or two on any list they send to clients must go a step further and educate nominations committees on the readiness of their women candidates to assume board directorships. Especially in countries with quotas, search firms stand to profit if they are resourceful in connecting with the databases on women leaders that already exist.

    Related Solutions

    Solution
    Symposium 2011

    Research and publications on the “business case” should be widely articulated by corporate leaders and advocates of board  diversity so that it becomes a more familiar context for women’s inclusion ...

    Research and publications on the “business case” should be widely articulated by corporate leaders and advocates of board  diversity so that it becomes a more familiar context for women’s inclu ...

    Research and publications on the “business case” should be widely articulated by corporate leaders and advocates of board  diversity so that it becomes a more familiar context for women’s inclusion on corporate boards.

    Business
    Solution
    Symposium 2011

    Use quota laws and enforce full implementation of these laws. Encourage greater transparency on voluntary targets and disclosure through security regulators in those countries where hard quotas are not accepted.

    Use quota laws and enforce full implementation of these laws. Encourage greater transparency on voluntary targets and disclosure through security regulators in those countries where hard quotas are no ...

    Use quota laws and enforce full implementation of these laws. Encourage greater transparency on voluntary targets and disclosure through security regulators in those countries where hard quotas are not accepted.

    Polity, Business
    Solution
    Symposium 2011

    The networks and registries of accomplished women need to be merged and made known to the network of corporate decision-makers.

    The networks and registries of accomplished women need to be merged and made known to the network of corporate decision-makers.

    The networks and registries of accomplished women need to be merged and made known to the network of corporate decision-makers.

    Business, Civil Society
    Solution
    Symposium 2011

    Establish male “champions of change”—corporate CEOs who can be the public voice for gender diversity on boards and in senior management, and who can even sponsor and mentor women for ...

    Establish male “champions of change”—corporate CEOs who can be the public voice for gender diversity on boards and in senior management, and who can even sponsor and mentor women for board place ...

    Establish male “champions of change”—corporate CEOs who can be the public voice for gender diversity on boards and in senior management, and who can even sponsor and mentor women for board placement.

    Polity, Academia, Business, Civil Society
    Solution
    Symposium 2011

    Codes of good corporate governance should include gender diversity as a key component.

    Codes of good corporate governance should include gender diversity as a key component.

    Codes of good corporate governance should include gender diversity as a key component.

    Business