Female Leadership in Corporate America Hits 'Alarming Turning Point,' Says S&P

By Thea Felicity

Apr 03, 2024 01:40 PM EDT

A woman walks past a Stalin-era skyscraper seen in silhouette during a sunny day in downtown Moscow on August 11, 2022.
(Photo : Photo by KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV/AFP via Getty Images)

S&P Global Market Intelligence reports a concerning trend in corporate America, indicating a decline in women's representation in senior-level positions, particularly in the C-suite. 

According to the report, women held 11.8% of approximately 15,000 C-suite roles in the S&P Global Total Market Index in 2023, down from 12.2% the previous year. This decline marks a major setback, considering the steady growth in women's representation observed over the past two decades, with numbers nearly tripling across broader senior positions to 22.3% in 2023. 

Sarah Cottle, head of data and insights at S&P Global Market Intelligence, expressed disappointment over this development, stating that not only momentum but also seats for women in leadership roles have been lost. 

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Why There Are Reduced Female Leaders in Corporate

The report attributes this decline to several factors, including a diminishing focus on diversity initiatives and challenges posed by legal uncertainties and political backlash against such initiatives. 

The impact of the pandemic on female leaders' work-life balance and career opportunities has also been noted, with many women opting for more flexible and inclusive work environments. 

Projections for achieving gender parity in the C-suite have been significantly revised, with forecasts now suggesting a timeline between 2055-2072, delayed by five to seven years compared to previous estimates. 

For now, BNN Bloomberg reports that S&P remains hopeful for a future where companies that prioritize gender diversity at the top serve women's interests better.

READ MORE: Women's History Month: A Woman's Inspiring Journey From Crew Member to Corporate Executive

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