Analysis of 96 women executive directors over a six-year period found that they earned a total of £257,000 a year on average.
Their male equivalents, however, took home £316,000 – 19 per cent more.
The research by Exeter University also showed that male directors had the potential to earn bigger bonuses. Those working in the best performing companies received bonuses of around £151,489 while those at the bottom end received £31,733 – a fluctuation of 263 per cent.
So, are all executive directors equal?
Or, is this in fact a symptom of occupational segregation?
No, I\’ve not got the figures to back this up but I don\’t think anyone will disagree that there tends to be a difference in the roles likely to be taken by such executive directors. Women are more likely to be in the support roles (HR, accounting, legal perhaps) while men are more likely to be line managers.
That would certainly explain the bonus differences: there\’s no real measurable output of those support services, no direct contribution to profitability, so a bonus is a difficult thing to argue for. People in HR etc also tend to get paid less than line managers outside the rarified levels of executive directors as well…..
Of course, it could also be the sexism inherent in a patriarchal society….leave you to believe which explanation you wish.