It’s a common refrain not just in the boardroom and C-suite, but in business in general. In an area where finance, international, and technology backgrounds are the most in demand, it’s important that we broaden our thinking. The talent is there, we just need to be disciplined in sourcing and retaining it. For boards, consider:

  1. Looking more broadly, beyond the C-suite.
  2. Start building a board succession plan, if you don’t already have one. In it, start tracking a “talent pipeline” and regularly review and update it.
  3. Require that you see a slate that includes the cognitive diversity you seek. Interview those candidates and repeat if needed. Don’t interview candidates that don’t match your specifications.

If you are an internal candidate, remember that sponsorship is where you need to focus.  Mentorship is great, but sponsorship is the holy grail.