Will Ruth Sunderland EVER engage with the evidence showing that appointing more women onto corporate boards leads to financial decline?

Ruth Sunderland is a business journalist with the Daily Mail. In January 2014 our associated organization Campaign for Merit in Business – C4MB – posted a blog piece critiquing her article on the financial returns in 2013 of FTSE100 and FTSE350 companies with female chief executives, here. An extract:

So, just one of the four female FTSE100 CEOs performed more strongly than the average male FTSE100 CEO in 2013. The article’s downplaying of female failure is breathtaking:

‘Cynthia Carroll left the top position at mining giant Anglo American earlier this year after disappointing investors and has been replaced by a man.’

‘Disappointing investors’? They lost their shirts. In the course of Cynthia Carroll’s five-year tenure at Anglo American £9 BILLION was wiped off the company’s value. The following is a link to our piece on the matter, along with further information on the performances of other female CEOs:


Six months later, in July 2014, C4MB posted another blog piece on Ms Sunderland – here – with the snappy title, ‘Is Ruth Sunderland (Daily Mail journalist) willing to engage with evidence showing that placing more women on corporate boards leads to financial decline?’ It was, of course a rhetorical question, and the answer was, ‘No’.

My thanks to Chloe for pointing me to a piece by Ms Sunderland in today’s edition of the Daily Mailhere. It’s titled:

Female success isn’t at the expense of men, so why does equality still look like a distant dream?

She may not have written the silly title, but she wrote the silly article. Excerpts:

The gender pay gap in this country is higher than the OECD average and we still have only a small handful of women in chief executive roles at top companies…

Many companies have made serious efforts to get more female directors into the boardroom, and to help women with children navigate work and home. So why does equality still look like a distant dream?

My personal theory is ‘the snowball effect’. [Will this morph into ‘the glass snowball’ in time, to join all the other glass-related myths?] While outrageous sexism is relatively rare these days, for fear of lawsuits if nothing else, many women experience small, but repeated episodes of discrimination – of being overlooked, not listened to, assumed not to be ambitious and so forth…

Despite the nonsense spouted by the ‘men’s rights’ brigade, female success does not come at the expense of male failure.

I shall email Ms Sunderland a link to this blog piece, and ask her if she’ll EVER be prepared to engage with the evidence – here – demonstrating a causal link between appointing more women onto corporate boards, and financial decline. Don’t hold your breath.



About Mike Buchanan

I'm a men's human rights advocate, writer, and publisher. My primary focus is leading the political party I launched in 2013, Justice for Men & Boys (and the women who love them). I still work actively on two campaigns I launched in early 2012, Campaign for Merit in Business and the Anti-Feminism League. In 2014 I launched The Alternative Sexism Project, aiming to raise public understanding that the sexism faced by men and boys has far more grievous consequences than the sexism faced by women and girls.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.
  • William Gruff

    It’s long past time we men understood that the primary function of any commercial enterprise is not profit but the provision of avenues to self-fulfilment for women, and the convenient and ‘easily navigated’ (bear in mind how good women are at map reading and parking to understand just how easy that navigation must be made) vehicles* in which to do it.

    Stripped of all the self-serving feminist bullshit, Mizz Sunderland is just another in the legions of privileged middle-class woman whining that men aren’t doing enough to make life even easier for them than it is already.

    *I’m speaking metaphorically there and hope that no one takes ‘vehicles’ to mean metal boxes running on four wheels.

  • No, she will not. She does not want to see the reality, only her dogma. And as long as men will politely tolerate her nonsense, on grounds of polite traditions, she will never make the effort to face the reality, the truth. And so it is with all aspects of feminism. Therefore, men will have to change their tact, be less polite and more blunt with women, in order to facilitate real change.

  • It is worth bearing in mind that Norway has had quotas in boardrooms for over ten years. I don’t have comparative financial data but a comprehensive report in 2014 discovered that the only women to benefit was those women put on boards by quota,

    Women in boardrooms by quota helps no-one but those women.

    Personally, I have found women to be about as good and about as bad at management as men. But if a feminist is going to try FORCING women into positions – political, business or military – then it is natural that performance is going to be closely monitored. And it seems that, generally speaking, women at the top aren’t doing too well.

  • I agree with Douglas M. Some women make excellent managers. Many do not. Some men make excellent managers. Many do not. But to be a director of a company usually requires decades of working horrible hours and being absolutely committed to your job. More men are going to do that than women. Mostly because women do not crave financial success as much as men. It is simple biology really. Women judge men to a large extent on their success. Men do not judge women on their success.

    Therefore you will always have more very experienced males available for promotion at higher levels than females. If you introduce quotas to try to achieve gender parity at the top; it will require you to promote less experienced people over more experienced ones. That cannot be good for the company.