Where Are All the Women CEOs?

February 7, 2020 | Publication

The traditional stepping stones to the chief executive position are jobs responsible for the bottom line—such as head of division—and those roles are still overwhelmingly filled by men.

At Hershey Co., CEO Michele Buck is evidence of what strategic talent planning can bring. Under her male predecessor, J.P. Bilbrey, the candy giant began more systematically building a female talent pipeline to the C-suite. Five times a year, Ms. Buck, 58, and her executive team review the top 70 roles in the company. They discuss what career-critical assignments the men and women in those positions, and the high-potential talent just below them, should take on next to move higher, including by getting P&L experience.