Korn Ferry: What Makes Women CEOs Different

In a study by Korn Ferry, the critical traits that are landing women in the rarified world of becoming a CEO were identified.
The four-month research offers a rare glimpse at how female CEOs operate. Some 57 women CEOs—from 41 Fortune 1000 companies and 16 large privately held companies—were interviewed and given detailed assessments over the spring and summer. 
Six key insights emerged with surprising consistency across all the women CEOs who participated in the study: 
  • These CEOs worked harder and longer to get to the top.
  • They were driven by both a sense of purpose and achieving business results.
  • Differentiating traits sustained the women’s success on the road to CEO.
  • They were more likely to engage the power of teams.
  • Despite evident potential, the women didn’t generally set their sights on becoming CEO.
  • The women shared STEM and financial backgrounds that served as a springboard.
Thought leadership category