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The top 10 worst excuses for not appointing more women to the boards of FTSE 350 companies have been published today, including suggestions they are not able to understand the ‘extremely complex’ issues boards deal with and the idea women do not want the ‘hassle or pressure’ of sitting on a top board.
The explanations, which come from a range of FTSE 350 Chairs and CEOs, were heard by the team behind the government-backed Hampton-Alexander Review, which has challenged all FTSE 350 companies to ensure at least a third of their board members and leadership are women by 2020.
The explanations include:
The number of women on boards has more than doubled in the FTSE 350 since 2011 according to the most recent statistics were published in November. In that time, the number of all-male FTSE 350 company boards also fell from 152 to 10.
Business Minister Andrew Griffiths said: “It’s shocking that some businesses think these pitiful and patronising excuses are acceptable reasons to keep women from the top jobs. Our most successful companies are those that champion diversity.”
Chair of the Hampton-Alexander Review Sir Philip Hampton said: “Around a third of FTSE 350 companies still have very few women either on their boards or in senior leadership roles. We used to hear these excuses regularly a few years ago, thankfully much less so now.
However, leaders expressing warm words of support but actually doing very little to appoint women into top jobs – or quietly blocking progress – are really not much better.”
The latest figures for the number of women on FTSE 350 boards will be published on 27 June.