The energizing discussion at Clearing the Path in Boston on June 11 produced many frank opinions.  Participants shared their successes and frustrations.  Captured below are some takeaways drawn from the personal experience of CEOs who were in the room.

 

 Women on Boards – suggestions and best practices

Encourage CEOs to think less about correct titles (“needs to be a CEO”) and more about functional diversity.  Make sure you have all the appropriate skills needed by looking for candidates at the VP and COO level, one level down from the usual search.

One CEO made a rule – all his management team must mentor three people who don’t look like them.

Make diversity a value for the organization.  Do this by talking to leadership about how important openness is to the future of the organization.

The CEO must insist on this priority.  Otherwise, everyone says yes, but when it gets hard, progress stops.

In board searches, seek competencies, not titles.  What is the right composition?  Would unusual competencies help?  (Artist? Engineer?) 

 Gender Wage Gap – suggestions and best practices