Could more women on the Board be the answer to British Business?

As March 8th sees International Women’s Day celebrated across the world, Toni Robinson, Managing Director of Nucleus HR asks whether it is critical for the success of British businesses in this age of post Brexit to be represented by more women in high level roles?

There has been a growing pressure for boards of directors within British businesses to have female representation for some time. But why? The Government even shelved plans to make board appointments for women mandatory, so what’s all the fuss about?

Credit Suisse have long reported that companies that are made up of 15% of women in Senior Management were 50% more profitable than those with less than 10% representation. Back in 2018, McKinsey & Company found that companies in the top quartile for gender diversity on executive teams were 21% more likely to outperform on profitability.

With statistics like that, it is easy to see why Norway – who have a long track record of more balanced boardrooms – are leading the way with nearly 40% of all board positions held by females. Here in the UK, board positions held by women are just over 25%, which has risen from 9.5% in 2010, admittedly.

Many of our female peers tell us that they are often surprised when they are offered their board appointment; whilst men often tell tales of threatening to leave unless such recognition is received. Whilst some might say that perhaps women need to perfect that bullish attitude, Toni Robinson often urges women to stay true to themselves, typically a woman’s strength lies in their empathetic approach so becoming more bullish can often counteract their natural skillset.

On chatting to male colleagues, female representation is a topic that isn’t given that much consideration, although, it is clear that even today there remains a fear within British businesses that if a woman is appointed to a senior role, they could go and get pregnant – leaving the role disrupted for up to 12 months. This fear is more noticeable in smaller, more traditional, businesses.

NucleusHR Managing Director, Toni Robinson reminded businesses that all appointments should be based on merit.

“Whilst statistics tell us that female representation increases profitability, appointments should be based on the skills required to achieve the company performance objectives; the gender of a person is irrelevant and has nothing to do with an offer of appointment at any level”.

If you are looking for assistance in how to improve performance through effective recruitment and management of your teams, please contact NucleusHR on www.nucleushr.com or calling 07960 418494.