Equal representation of women in boards a long haul

Written by Janani Sampath

Ajay Tyagi, chief of the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), has recently highlighted the need for a gender balance in the boards of the top 500 companies in India, with women in equal numbers as men.

As per reports, talking about the need for an equal representation, Tyagi pointed out that companies with diverse representation did better, as shown by research. Diversity comes with economic and governance benefits, he added.

Tyagi noted since 2014 from a mere 5 – 6 percent to almost 17 percent today, there had been a rise in women’s representation, but there was a long way to go. He also pointed out that their representation in board committees left a lot to be desired, as it was still low at 7 percent.

Diversity helps companies too

Avtar, which has been working with corporates across sectors, has been driving the message of diversity, equity, and inclusion as an important aspect of a company’s policy.

The Best Companies for Women in India (BCWI),  a gender analytics exercise by Avtar in association with Working Mother, has highlighted the clear benefits of diversity. The companies that have woven diversity policies have a combination of professional and personal incentives for women employers. There are programs to enable career progression like career sponsorship, mentoring, leadership training, alongside those that help them traverse the path of marriage and aid in the maternity continuum– the two stages that derail a woman’s career.

The workplaces inclusive of women are not only enabling women’s careers but also helping the business leverage the benefits of greater diversity.

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