Diversity in the Boardroom
The European Parliament has issued a call for the largest European companies to outline their diversity policies for their boardrooms. This could lead to a rush for organisations to thoughtlessly seek candidates that exhibit diverse characteristics in terms of genders, sexualities, physical abilities as well as education levels and class/socio-economic factors.
The Financial Times (17 January 2018) reported on a Deutsche Bank report on the impact of the new European Directive on the engagement of employers and investment portfolios in the disclosure rules. There is much speculation about the nature of the disclosure, compliance and the upstream impact on the faces in European boards. A McKinsey report in 2015 on large publicly listed companies found that those with a greater boardroom diversity were 15% more likely to produce better returns – so why all the anxiety?
It could be a generalised fear that for many men, these issues are experienced as an attack on their position and legitimacy in the boardroom – and in the face of attack, it is best to just withdraw or bury heads in a hope that, like other European Directives in the wake of BREXIT, “this too may pass”.
Now more than ever, there is a need to find out how we find and relate with men in order to engage critically and thoughtfully. We must not just change the variety of genitals in the boardroom, but rather, to focus on the behaviours that are seen as problematic – some of which could be due to a gender homogeneity?
The Tavistock Institute’s programme on Dynamics at Board Level is open to applications and is looking for those men in particular, who are ready to study in depth the nature of the gender (im)balance in boardrooms and how to work effectively in the transition to a new realm of board practice.
We are now inviting applications for the next cohort beginning in June (closing date 9 March). For a brochure with full details including an outline, venue details, module dates and fee etc and/or if you’d like a no-obligation conversation with the programme directors, contact Rachel Kelly: firstname.lastname@example.org
Applications for 2018 have closed early because the course was oversubscribed – new dates will be announced in due course.