Female board directors rise to leadership positions faster than men

Women who serve on boards typically rise to a leadership role like chairperson or lead director about 20 months faster than men, according to a study of about 6,000 public companies conducted by Diligent Institute, the research arm of a board management software company.

Women serve on boards for 6.31 years on average before taking on a leadership role, compared to men's 8.02 years. This may be because women on boards are highly engaged. Twenty-one percent of board committee chairs are women — nearly equal to the 22 percent of board members who are women.

The report points to this as "evidence that companies are actively seeking fresh perspectives in leadership roles."

However, with women representing just 22 percent of board members and 7 percent of board chairs, boards still need to improve gender parity.  

"We need more than only 'a few good women' to help companies reach their full potential for modern governance," the report concludes.

More articles on leadership and management:

10 hospitals hiring COOs
7 healthcare pioneers on Time's 100 Women of the Year list
US ranked 53rd globally for gender parity by World Economic Forum

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