Today we’re driving down to Richmond to hear what Governor McDonnell has to say about “The Year of the Entrepreneur.” The press conference is part of StartUp Virginia (and StartUp America), programs designed to celebrate, inspire, and accelerate high-growth entrepreneurship and energize our local economies. I’m wondering how many women will be at the event.
- 12 of the Fortune 500 are led by women (down from 15 in 2010)
- 15.7% of the Fortune 500’s board members are women
- Less than 10% of California tech company board members are women
I wonder if Virginia will fare better for the fairer sex. The Metro DC area has become a hotbed of startup activity recently, so there’s opportunity to diversify in the boardroom. And we should. Research shows that companies with women on the board ‘demonstrate higher collective intelligence.’ These companies produce 48% better return on equity. Wow. Leadership style apparently does matter.
Men have dominated corporate power structures since the industrial age began. It used to be that women had to adopt their commonly accepted style in order to climb the corporate ladder. Do misperceptions about style and positional power still hold us back?
If a 48% better return on equity holds constant, I wonder how much value the glass ceiling has squandered over time. Let’s get on track and balance our boardrooms through diversity in all forms. It shouldn’t be hard to beat the pants off of California!