Legal & General Investment Management (LGIM), one of Europe’s largest institutional asset managers and a major global investor managing £362 billion in assets for more than 3,000 clients, is trying to persuade headhunters to widen the pool of company directors by bringing in people without direct board experience.
“It’s not just about gender,” says Sacha Sadan, LGIM’s director of corporate governance. Diversity of age, nationality and skillsets can be just as important in creating a good board of directors.
“People are now thinking it’s more risky not to have diversity on board than to have the risk of inexperienced board members,” says Ms Morrissey of the 30% Club, a campaign that aspires to get more women onto UK boards. “Novices are going to ask the questions that those who’ve been on the board for years wouldn’t think to ask.”
The FT article, LGIM calls for greater boardroom diversity (12/4/2011), goes on to note that more women on boards is correlated with better performance but it may take at least 30% of the board to be diverse before it makes a difference.