I sat on corporate boards in America in the 90s and was pleasantly surprised at the professional manner in which women were treated there, compared to my experience back home here in Australia which has been tokenistic at best. One key issue there is that women, especially older women, were recognised for their skills, experience, qualifications and the different, and often more balanced, perspectives they brought. Unfortunately here, the older you get, the more devalued you become. Ageism in Australia is quite appalling unless you are a well-known figure . Mandatory quotas and positive discrimination were also used in Education in the 1980s to try and change the culture here with some limited success- positive discrimination was actually a more successful strategy. If you want more women on corporate boards, then there needs to be more valuing of the skills and experience which boards actually need by women, as well as men, and an acknowledgement that the Ecology of Leadership for women is quite different.
Women and Corporate Boards
March 7, 2012 by