I just read an interesting article from the Harvard Business Review on the importance of including more women in Boards of Directors and it got me thinking…….
The article discussed a trend in Norway where they use mandatory quotas to get 40% of boards to be made up of women or at least 3 women on a board. I’ve never really been a big fan of quotas in any way because I think it shouldn’t matter what or who a person is, you should just get the best person for the job, but the article really got me thinking about the benefits of diversity, which I have always believed in.
The research found there was a strong correlation between, “the number of women on boards and in the C-Suite and ROI and ROE of company returns.” It makes sense when you think about things that women are likely to bring to the boardroom. Since women tend to ask more questions and not let up until they have an answer or direction to go in, (stereotypically called nagging,) it makes sense that having women on a board might lead to improved effectiveness. They are also more likely to make sure that everyone in the group has a voice and is heard. One of the biggest obstacles for boards is ineffective communication. Sometimes one person takes over and others are either not strong enough to voice a different opinion or they just don’t want to spend any more time discussing the same issue so they stay quiet. And the board misses out.
I think it is much the same in any department that is too homogeneous. When a manager doesn’t take time to listen to all the members of his department, everyone loses. Often the quietest people have the most insightful opinions and ideas. When it comes to women, specifically in the HTM industry right now, there are still very few. According to the article, Professor Dhir identified seven consequences of gender-based heterogeneity for boardroom work, board governance, and group dynamics,” that I think apply to any team or department:
Read the article here: https://hbr.org/2015/02/women-directors-change-how-boards-work
Thoughts…….. Contact me at abbe@TECResourceCenter.com
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