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Should companies be forced to have more women on their boards?

(52 Posts)
HelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Wed 01-May-13 15:23:46


We were fascinated to see Vince Cable, Business Secretary, saying in his Mumsnet webchat today that he's taking steps to tackle companies who don't have women on their boards.

Vince posted: "We're making a lot of progress on implementing the recommendations for significantly higher levels of female representation on company boards. The numbers are better and we're on track to meet the 25% target by 2015.

"I'm chasing up companies which have women-free boards and had a leading mining company chief executive in my office just this week, answering my questions as to why they hadn't made more progress.

"There are genuine issues about long-term executive pipelines for women which we're tackling through shared parental leave, amongst other policies."

What do you think? Why are there, apparently, still so many barriers to women at board level? Should there be more positive discrimination for women - even measures to force companies to recruit women to their board? Are there enough women aiming to get onto the board of a big company - and, if not, why not? If you are already on a board, what's it like and would you recommend it to other women?

We'd love to know your thoughts...

Creeping Fri 03-May-13 09:53:00

"As society evolves", "as labour evolves"
At a snail's pace.

Men are not going to address their privilege unless they are aware of their privilege. Which the majority isn't, and they continue to hire in their own image. Many think they got where they are by merit only, even when they are all for equality. I think even the majority of women are not aware of their inferior position in society, or think it doesn't apply to them as they have "chosen" their smaller career. Feminists (m/f) are only a minority.

If we have to wait for society "to evolve" without intervention we'll have to wait a long time for equality. It is simple really, if we are serious about equality there will have to be more drastic measures.

HairyLittleCarrot Fri 03-May-13 10:59:01

Perhaps there should be substantial fines levied against large companies who are failing to promote women to board or senior positions.
Proceeds from fines to be diverted into family friendly programmes, childcare facilities, flexible and part time working schemes.
Fines could be progressively increased year on year if the imbalance isn't addressed. And reduced if companies actually provide evidence of their own investment and commitment to such programmes.

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