A recent study revealed that when female representation on company boards increases, it's usually due to government-mandated gender quota systems. The study by Egon Zehnder found that in countries averaging at least three women on company boards, all except one are operating under a quota system.
In the US, we are still fighting to increase representation despite proponents fighting on our behalf for the past few decades. Large American companies have an average of 2.5 female directors—a number that hasn't significantly risen since 2012.
It’s a little depressing that companies largely resist progress when it isn’t mandatory, but we’ll take what we can get. Gender diversity matters, and ideally, companies would get there without the legal push, but maybe that’s not realistic given the evidence. California recently became the first US state to implement a board quota for women, and we’re interested to see if more states will follow suit.