Female leadership in top companies grows but remains inadequate

Image: AI Generated

Women are steadily advancing in the business world, as indicated by the Associated Press’ latest compensation survey using Equilar’s executive data analysis. Out of 341 CEOs at S&P 500 firms serving at least two fiscal years, 25 are women—the highest recorded number of top-paid female CEOs since the survey’s inception. This marks a rise from 20 women last year. Furthermore, women CEOs saw a notable 21% increase in median pay to $17.6 million this year, surpassing the 12% rise to $16.3 million for male counterparts.

Additionally, the share of board seats held by women stands at a modest 29.7%, indicating minimal improvement according to the latest 50/50 Women on Boards Project analysis of the Russell 3000. The report underscores the urgent need for solutions addressing barriers hindering women’s advancement, projecting that gender parity on boards and 20% representation of women of color won’t be achieved until 2045 at current rates.

The stagnant progress of women in leadership roles prompts questions about the underlying causes and necessary remedies to reignite the path to equality. Research by Christy Glass and Alison Cook highlights the “glass cliff” phenomenon, wherein women often ascend to leadership during crises or high-risk scenarios. Their findings reveal that women, particularly women of color, navigate a “risk tax” throughout their careers, strategically assuming high-risk roles to overcome biases and stereotypes hindering their advancement.

In essence, achieving gender parity demands proactive measures to dismantle biases and obstacles across all career stages, ensuring women have equitable opportunities for leadership advancement. Delaying action until 2045 is unacceptable—effective change must start now.

Re-reported from the article originally published in Forbes.

Female leadership in top companies grows but remains inadequate

Image: AI Generated

Women are steadily advancing in the business world, as indicated by the Associated Press’ latest compensation survey using Equilar’s executive data analysis. Out of 341 CEOs at S&P 500 firms serving at least two fiscal years, 25 are women—the highest recorded number of top-paid female CEOs since the survey’s inception. This marks a rise from 20 women last year. Furthermore, women CEOs saw a notable 21% increase in median pay to $17.6 million this year, surpassing the 12% rise to $16.3 million for male counterparts.

Additionally, the share of board seats held by women stands at a modest 29.7%, indicating minimal improvement according to the latest 50/50 Women on Boards Project analysis of the Russell 3000. The report underscores the urgent need for solutions addressing barriers hindering women’s advancement, projecting that gender parity on boards and 20% representation of women of color won’t be achieved until 2045 at current rates.

The stagnant progress of women in leadership roles prompts questions about the underlying causes and necessary remedies to reignite the path to equality. Research by Christy Glass and Alison Cook highlights the “glass cliff” phenomenon, wherein women often ascend to leadership during crises or high-risk scenarios. Their findings reveal that women, particularly women of color, navigate a “risk tax” throughout their careers, strategically assuming high-risk roles to overcome biases and stereotypes hindering their advancement.

In essence, achieving gender parity demands proactive measures to dismantle biases and obstacles across all career stages, ensuring women have equitable opportunities for leadership advancement. Delaying action until 2045 is unacceptable—effective change must start now.

Re-reported from the article originally published in Forbes.