Last week, the Board Challenge kicked off, which is a pledge for US Boards of Directors to add a black director within a year.
Quoting Geek Wire:
- Among Fortune 500 companies, 9% of board members are Black men or women, reports theBoardlist .
- Of S&P 500 companies, 37% lacked any Black directors, according to Black Enterprise.
- Diverse boards are 43% more likely than non-diverse boards “to achieve financial performance above the national industry medium for companies in the top quartile vs. bottom quartile,” according to a 2018 report by McKinsey & Company.
Meanwhile, Accenture has launched their Black Founders Development Program, which focuses on helping Black business owners and leaders grow their technology businesses through more direct access to venture capital, corporate mentorship and strategic connections with Accenture business partners and clients.
According to a study by RateMyInvestor and Diversity VC, Black startup founders receive less than 1% of all venture capital funding. A Kauffman Foundation analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data found that 28% of Black entrepreneurs’ profits were limited by lack of access to capital, compared to just 10% of white entrepreneurs.
Why do we care?
The data this podcast yesterday reported is similar – across 100 IT channel companies, there are 876 individuals that these companies have identified as leaders, and only 1.83% are Black.
Note the “add a director.” In my weekend editorial, I stated “you can actually expand the leadership team. This isn’t pie. You don’t only get a sliver.”
Make the pie bigger. Add leadership spots, because you want to out perform. AS an industry we constantly talk about Best in Class performance and the best practices around them. Well, here’s another. Expanding your leadership team correlates to high performance.
We also know that capital is not the problem – there’s plenty of cheap capital out there. Let’s work to get it in more places.