Following Jo Tilley-Riley's recent criticism of the lack of women in social investment, June O'Sullivan of the London Early Years Foundation (LEYF), discusses why it is beneficial to have women on social investment boards. June is a member of the CAN Invest Early Intervention Fund board; CAN Invest are very proud to have a majority female committee.
"The world of business is best and more successful when the team has men and women. It simply makes sense because you gain two different perspectives about opportunities, challenges and impact. In the same way, businesses looking for investment will gain a broader hearing from a mixed team and therefore the panel is more likely to have a more rounded debate, which increases the chance of making a more sensible decision."
"Studies prove that men and women don’t differ much cognitively. However, society pushes and labels men and women in different corners and it makes them experience life differently. As a result, women's perception on life, markets and individuals are different from those of men. It is not a matter of saying who is better or who is worse, who is more “right or wrong”. It’s a question of balance.
As an entrepreneur, to design a service or a product properly, you are using insights, perceptions and experiences from as many stakeholders as possible. So why shouldn’t a board behave the same way they expect companies to behave?"