Gender Diversification. Europe in the Lead
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Gender Diversification. Europe in the Lead

According to the Credit Suisse Research Institute, companies with at least one female director generate 3.5 percent higher compound excess return than the ones run by male-only boards.

In the first decade of the 21 century, some European countries began to take measures towards greater gender diversification of their corporate boards. The quotas introduced back then finally bring results and set a global trend. The report "The CS Gender 3000: The Reward for Change", by Credit Suisse Research Institute examines the trend in detail and checks if there is a link between gender diversity and a company's performance.

Progress in the Boardroom

The researchers analyzed over 3000 of the largest companies worldwide and mapped as many as 27,000 senior managers. The number of women on boards is growing, although there are vast differences among countries and regions. In 2015, the leading country was Norway with 46.7 percent of board members being female. On the other end of the spectrum was Japan with a mere 3.5 percent, although it has to be noted that this figure is over three times higher than five years earlier.

More Diversity Needed at the Management Level

However, there is more to be done, as the positive trend has not transferred from the board of directors level to the senior management level. Here, the progress of gender diversification is far from satisfactory. Female participation in executive senior management (CEOs and those reporting to CEOs) has increased globally by less than one percent: from 12.9 percent in 2014 to 13.8 percent to 2015.

Don't Miss Out on Improved Performance

Those companies who haven't caught up with the gender diversification trend yet should do so quickly. There is clear evidence that companies with a higher proportion of women in decision-making roles – both in the boardroom and on the executive floor – perform better and generate higher returns.

To learn more, watch Richard Kersley, Head of Global Research Product, explaining the report findings.

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Bridging the Gender Gap

Credit Suisse has recently joined Ellevate Network, the global network for professional women. The network is committed to supporting women through education, inspiration, and opportunity. Their mission is to close the gender achievement gap in business by providing women with a community to lean on and learn from.

"We are excited to partner with Ellevate and join a network of highly talented and successful women. This is just one of the many ways we are looking to build the current and next generation of female leaders at Credit Suisse," said Lydie Hudson, Chief Operating Officer of Global Markets at Credit Suisse.