Today is a day to celebrate. Women now make up 25% of all board positions on the boards of FTSE 100 companies.
British business has met the target set out in the Davies Review in 2011 and some 6 months ahead of year end. This is a milestone event by any standards and one which frankly, many found difficult to imagine only four short years ago.
It signals a shift in the culture at the top of British business and near revolution that is taking place in the boardrooms of the UK’s biggest companies. However, we would not have achieved this without the huge groundswell of support from Chairman, businesses large and small and the efforts of Executive Search community, both on an individual level and as a collective. Without unified action and the support on this agenda the community has shown to clients and candidates alike, many capable, credible women would still be waiting in the wings for their rightful place at the top table and British boardrooms would be the poorer for it. Our sincere thanks go to you all.
Of course there is still more to do. More focus is needed on the Executive layer just below the board, we need to see more women appointed as Chairs and SIDs too. However, this is an excellent achievement from a very low starting point.
The Davies Steering Group will analyse progress to date over the summer months, reflect on what has worked well and where further efforts are required. We will do this in conjunction with the Executive Search community and other industry experts, publish a summary report of our findings at the end of October, along with recommendations for the next stage in the journey.
If we maintain the laser focus on this as a core business and talent issue, we have the opportunity over the next five years to remove the topic of gender parity in the boardroom from the debate, once and for all.
An achievement worthy of celebration.
Lord Davies (Chair) Sir John Parker
Dominic Casserley Susan Vinnicombe
Amanda Mackenzie Denise Wilson
For and on behalf of Lord Davies & the Davies Steering Group.