Quotas have been much in the news lately. The drive to bring greater numbers of women to the World Economic Forum raised the issue once again.
The WEF goal is to have the100 corporate "strategic partners" of this year's World Economic Forum annual meeting in Davos, Switzerland – a group that includes companies like Goldman Sachs, Deutsche Bank, and News Corp. — bring at least one woman among their five delegates to the conference. Did it work? Not really. According to Reuters, women made up only 16% of the 2500 delegates this year. Worse, 20 of the sponsors brought all male teams.
And now, Germany is having a conversation about quotas for women on boards (see my posts on this topic here). As stark evidence of why something has to be done, read what The Local (Germany's news in English) had to say about the Deutsche Bank head:
“I’m pleased that the Chancellor has said that she does not want a legal quota for women,” said Deutsche Bank boss Josef Ackermann, according to Handelsblatt.Colorful and beautiful? Really!
Though Deutsche Bank has an all-male executive committee, he told the paper there should be more women in executive positions, adding that they made company boards “more colourful and beautiful.”
No wonder quotas are in the news. 40 years into the women's movement, it will require forcing women on boards and to Davos to confront antiquated attitudes like that.
UPDATE: Article 2/13 from the U.K.'s Independent.
Susan Colantuono is CEO of Leading Women and author of No Ceiling, No Walls.
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