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“Maximising people potential & performance”. The networks of highly connected women directors through the glass ceiling. Dr Rosanne Hawarden www. betterboards.biz. “Maximising people potential & performance”. In 1999, the first Fortune 500 company woman CEO ,

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slide2

“Maximising people potential & performance”

In 1999, the first

Fortune 500 company woman CEO ,

Carleton Fiorina of Hewlett Packard said

“ Women face no limits whatsoever. There is not a glass ceiling”

Outlier - a director with 2+ seats

(Malcolm Gladwell)

slide3

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Trophy directors Super trophy 4-7 seats directors

8+ seats

The best way for a woman to become a director of a

Fortune 500 company?

Golden token director

A tenured Harvard University professor in law, economics, business or medicine.

Branson (2010) Last Male Bastion

slide4

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Board appointments Black Swan events?

  • Rare
  • High impact
  • Unpredictable
  • Only explained in retrospect

Nicolas Taleb’s term

As rare as a white kiwi?

a new view on diversity

“Maximising people potential & performance”

A New View on Diversity?

Successful business networks are stable and predictable with sufficient diversity to ensure their survival in times of political and economic change.

Hiring aliens from outer space?

a new view on diversity6

“Maximising people potential & performance”

A New View on Diversity?

Pareto’s rule of 80/20 or the power law “Critical few and the trivial many”

20% connector directors

80% single seat directors

slide7

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Its not a Glass Ceiling

Its a Glass Network

Glass Ceiling = First board appointment to a substantial listed company

the glass network

“Maximising people potential & performance”

The Glass Network

The ‘Glass Network’ is invisible to participants and only revealed through analysis tools.

The complex and powerful network

organising the world of non-executive directorships opening (or closing) opportunities for aspiring directors.

Dr Rosanne HawardenDBA, FCIS

social network analysis

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Social network analysis

Look at how many components and only analyse the largest component

Red dots

are connector directors with six seats or links to other directors

slide10

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Use quotas to increasethis

level?

GLASS CEILING

BASICS

the glass network11
The ‘Glass Network’ uses the links created between directors sitting at a common boardroom table

Female directors are not marginalised in the smaller components, tending to be found in the largest connected component, often 80% of the network

The networks of male and female directors are the same, differing only in size

Most directors have only one directorship or seat, approximately 20% have two plus seats and are the ‘connector directors’

Directors as outliers - misconceptions about success

Women are found in all director networks, a few always have multiple seats.

Director networks look the same at the global, national or regional level

Recruiting directors by ‘shoulder tapping’ gives rise to the familiar ‘old boy’ network

A power law called the ‘law of the critical few and trivial many’ shapes the network.

City size, company size and tax payments also follow a power law. Pareto’s 80/20 rule. Big successful companies in large cities have bigger boards that appoint more women

“Maximising people potential & performance”

The Glass Network
quotas

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Quotas?

To force rapid social change

quotas (racial or gender based)

are an effective tool.

Equity is hard won and not easily sustained.

conclusions for aspiring directors

“Maximising people potential & performance”

Conclusions for Aspiring Directors
  • Competition is covert and fierce for scare appointments
  • Start early getting governance skills and board experience – the best connected directors can have 40-120 board appointments in a business career
  • Use personal enablers that will raise your profile – ie family connections, celebrity status
  • Very high director turnover means that even the most successful directors don’t stay long
  • Realistic expectations - you will most likely only ever have one substantial board appointment