A recent report for the British government has revealed that the number of all-male FTSE 350 company boards fell from 152 in 2011 to 10 in 2017, but nonetheless British boardrooms remain overwhelmingly a playground for males. Despite the government’s call for one-third of FTSE company leaderships to be filled by women by 2020, British company chairmen and CEOs were reported as giving a host of reasons for the slow progress. These included the suggestion that women don’t fit comfortably into the board environment; that there weren’t enough women with the right credentials and experience to sit on a board; and anyway the issues covered by boards are "extremely complex". Other excuses were that shareholders aren’t worried about the make-up of boards; some board members don’t want women colleagues; all the "good women" have been snapped up; and some boards had already appointed a woman and that was deemed enough.

And some said board chairmen were eager to appoint a woman, but unfo...

BL Premium

This article is reserved for our subscribers.

A subscription helps you enjoy the best of our business content every day along with benefits such as exclusive Financial Times articles, ProfileData financial data, and digital access to the Sunday Times and Sunday Times Daily.

Already subscribed? Simply sign in below.

Questions or problems? Email helpdesk@businesslive.co.za or call 0860 52 52 00. Got a subscription voucher? Redeem it now