Building the Modern Boardroom June 2, 2020

Diversifying Your Board Doesn’t Have to Be Difficult or Expensive

By Coco Brown Founder and CEO

We’ve all been guilty of hiring within our comfort zone. After all, it’s often easy to just hire who you know, right? But this doesn’t work if you are looking to widen the perspective and increase the strength of your board. Doing the same old thing is going to lead to, well, the same old results.

For leaders who are truly looking to diversify their boards and their C-suite teams, you must break away from your familiar network. You must perform your search with intention, purposely targeting new candidates. Purposely targeting women. Purposely extending your reach.

Prepare yourself: Some of the candidates you encounter throughout this process may not fit the stereotypical profile of who you think you’ve been looking for. (Hint: there are countless board directors and leaders who are qualified to be first-time board directors, who are not retired CEOs!) We are in an entirely new world of business, technology, and societal expectations. If you’re still seeking the profile of what was a typical candidate in the ‘90s, then you’re doing it all wrong.

Calling all forward-thinking CEOs and board directors

Athena partners with forward-thinking CEOs and board directors regularly to help them widen their search—and their networks. Many of these CEOs and board directors have similar stories: “Coco, we have an open board seat. We want it to be the right person, ideally a woman. We’re ready to diversify. But we just don’t know where to get started or how to make the right connections.”

My response is always the same, every time: It doesn’t have to be difficult. It doesn’t have to be expensive. And, it doesn’t have to take a year!

Here’s why. Imagine that you’ve been given a key card to the most exclusive club in the world for women leaders—the top 10% of women in business. You can unlock access to hundreds of board-ready women. You can share your board opportunities. You can connect to as many women leaders as necessary to find the absolute perfect fit (but really, it won’t take more than 5-8 connections). If you choose, you can upgrade to concierge service, where the top leaders land in your inbox. Nothing complicated, no 20-page contracts, no six-figure retainers.

Instantly expand your network to include top women leaders

It has arrived. For board directors and CEOs who want to change their Board Match experience, Athena is standing by to support you.

You can post opportunities yourself, starting now (there is absolutely no cost to do so). Just fill out the form. We’ll give it a once-over to ensure it shines. Then, we’ll share it with our entire community of top leaders. You’ll receive quality candidates in your inbox.

Or, you may choose to upgrade to our concierge Board Match program, where fees range from $10K-$50K. You only pay for success. This is where we act on your behalf and recruit for you, and take the time to learn, intimately, what your needs are. There is no risk for you to leverage this service since you only pay if we find the perfect director for you.

Our goal isn’t to put a paywall between you and women leaders. It’s to diversify boards and to help women rise. Our opportunities form removes the barriers, such as money, time, and network, to your success.