Younger Women Advancing to C-suite The Fifth Women Directors and Executives Report 2015

Promoting women leaders through self-regulation is a strategic target of Finland Chamber of Commerce. Our goal is that the best persons are appointed to leadership positions of companies, regardless of their gender.

In order to make this goal reality we have created our award-winning Women Leaders Program and the Women Directors and Executives Report is a crucial element of the program. The report produces facts for public discussion and food for thought so that the discussion would be based on facts and not just feelings. This report is our fifth women executives study. Previous reports can be found here.

In the fifth report we observe continuing increase of women directors. We also discovered a new trend; in the younger age groups women’s share of executive positions is higher than in the older age groups. This gives hope that that the glass ceiling will crack in the near future.

The Finnish model of promoting women’s leadership through self-regulation without legislated quotas attracts international attention. Representatives of Finland Chamber of Commerce have given speeches and presentations on the subject at many international events on several continents.

In June 2015, Finland Chamber of Commerce won the first prize for its Women Leaders Program in the best corporate social responsibility project category at the World Chambers Competition in Torino.

In order to share our information and experiences we publish the reports in English in addition to the Finnish version.The findings of these reports have also inspired the Finland Chamber of Commerce to take further concrete measures to promote women’s leadership.

The report covers all companies with main listing in Helsinki Stock Exchange, 118 companies (27 large cap, 34 mid cap and 57 small cap). As for boards, the data for the report was gathered during the 2015 AGM seasons and covers 117 companies (27 large cap, 33 mid cap and 57 small cap). The companies are divided into three categories by their market capitalization: large-caps (over 1 billion Euros), mid-caps (150 million Euros to 1 billion Euros) and small-caps (under 150 million Euros).

Some ten years ago corporate boards of large companies were male-dominated. Since then the situation has changed considerably in Finland where both the corporate sector and government have contributed to a major increase in women’s participation on corporate boards. The number of women on Finnish listed companies’ boards is among the top EU countries and the world as well. This has been achieved without quota legislation.


Read the full report here

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