Women run just 5.5 per cent of FTSE 100 companies

Women are in charge of 5.5 per cent of 600 FTSE 100  and S&P 500 companies, a new report by Towergate Insurance has shown. That's a total of 33 organisations, including the likes of Yahoo, IBM, Hewlett Packard Enterprise (HPE), Oracle or Royal Mail.  

But it's not just the overall equality that's poor – there’s also the question of gender pay equality. Women in senior positions, on average, earn £2 million less than their male counterparts, as of fiscal year 2016. They also take a year and a half longer to reach CEO positions than men. 

There is general opinion that one of the biggest barriers to women succeeding in the workplace is the struggle to balance between family and the office. Although the report says this is true in 22 per cent of the cases – it’s not the number one reason. 

the biggest challenge, in more than a third (38 per cent) of cases, is actually workplace culture, which is often non-supportive. Inadequate training and changing career directions are also the more usual obstacles. But having a family does make it harder to have a successful career – 51 per cent of women think so, compared to just 18 per cent among men. Interestingly enough, there is no such gender gap among Millennials (18 – 34), signalling a shift in perception. 

The report also finds that more than half (52 per cent) of women believe they are being held to a higher standard than men. Just a third (33 per cent) of men share the same opinion.  The full report, entitled Female CEOs, can be found on this link. 

Image source: Shutterstock/Sergey Nivens