Three out of four woman directors surveyed by Heidrick & Struggles International and Women Corporate Directors oppose a legal quota for the number of women serving as corporate board members.
Among other findings in the survey, released today: 99% said that female directors can make a difference in helping peers gain board seats; 64% took steps to make sure women were included in the pool of candidates considered for their boards; 69% have been explicitly asked to suggest other women as candidates for their boards; 85% recommended other women for their boards regardless if they were asked; 54% said at least one of the women they recommended was elected to their board; and 69% personally mentored another professional woman to help her get on a board.
Women hold 15% of the seats on boards at the 479 largest U.S.-based public companies this year, up less than one percentage point from 2003, according to Candice Warltier, Heidrick & Struggles spokeswoman.
"The good news is Heidrick & Struggles has seen an increase in the number of director searches targeting women across the U.S.," Ted Dysart, managing partner-Americas of Heidrick & Struggles' global board of directors practice, said in the statement. "However, the reality is that women still lag far behind their male counterparts."
The firm surveyed 77 members of Women Corporate Directors, a network of female board members, who are on the boards of 165 companies.