"The New York Times: A new initiative aptly named the "30% Club" aims to increase the number of women on boards in the U.K. to a third by the year 2015, without resorting to the quotas common in other European countries."
"When Helena Morrissey, chief executive of the money manager Newton, brought home an industry award for “Most Influential Woman in Asset Management” in October, her 5-year-old son asked whether there was a similar category for men. There was not. 'It showed we’re just not there yet when it comes to gender equality,' Mrs. Morrissey said.
That is why she set up an initiative last month, backed by the chairmen at the Lloyds Banking Group, HSBC, the retailer J Sainsbury and other companies, to elevate more women to management boards. The chairmen pledged to spread the word among senior executives about the need for more diversity on boards in Britain, many of which had never had a female director.
The goal is to raise the number of women on boards to about a third by 2015 — without resorting to the quotas that are now law in Norway and France and are being phased in by Spain.
At the 100 largest publicly traded companies in Britain, 12.5 percent of directors were women this year, compared with 12.2 percent last year and 12 percent the year before, according to a study by the Cranfield School of Management, which referred to “a situation of stagnation.” About one in four companies still have exclusively male boards, including the energy provider International Power and the retailer Associated British Foods"
U.S. Banker: Women make up over 50% of the labor force in the financial industry, but only 16.8 percent of executive officers, and only 16.4% of board members. Companies are working to raise those numbers, as the U.S. lags behind some countries.
"Call it the "glass ceiling" or the 'boys' club' or some other euphemism, but there is no denying that women in corporate America are not proportionately represented in either the C-suite or the boardroom.
In the financial services industry, women make up 55.6 percent of the labor force, but only 16.8 percent of executive officers, according to the New York nonprofit group Catalyst. In the boardroom, that percentage drops to 16.4 percent, and at the chief executive level it falls to 2.5 percent. The good news is that in corporate America in general and in the financial services industry in particular, the role played by women at the highest levels of corporations continues to expand.
'Boards now are looking at diversity in a number of ways—gender, regional generational, ethnic. In addition, there are more seats open because sitting CEOs are now often asked by their own boards not to serve on more than one outside board.'"