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Frequently Asked Questions

Why don’t you have data on race or workers who aren’t executives or directors?

The answer is simple: Companies have not made this data available, nor has the government, which collects some of this information via the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. We want and have called on companies to release this data, particularly on race and rank — (as have many others). Read more about it here.

Where do you get your data?

Most of our data comes from Equilar, a firm that provides data on public companies based on corporate filings with regulatory agencies such as the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC). A smaller portion of the data came from original research. LedBetter-sourced data was compiled and double-checked using publicly available information published by the companies themselves, typically on a corporate governance page or annual report.

Are there differences between your 2016 and 2019 dataset?

Yes. Our 2016 dataset had about 240 companies; our 2019 dataset was expanded to more than 550 corporate listings. Our 2016 dataset was composed entirely of original research conducted by the LedBetter team; 2019 largely consisted of data compiled by our provider Equilar, with about one-sixth of the companies supplied by LedBetter original research. You can see the source for the data in the bottom right hand corner of each listing by clicking into the “card.” We also expanded to more categories in 2019 and, as a result, some companies were recategorized into a more specific category. Our 2019 dataset was published in August 2020.

How do you define who is on an executive team?

Equilar’s data (you can see who gathered the data by clicking into the “card” for each brand or company) is based on who the corporation named as their executive team in SEC filings. LedBetter-researched companies (our original research makes up roughly one-sixth of the dataset) were based on a similar methodology; for those not publicly traded, we relied on the list of executives named on the company’s site at the time of dataset creation, which was the summer of 2019.

Do you capture data on individuals who identify as non-binary or transgender?

There are many types of data we would love to have, but don’t have the ability or resources to access. As of now, our database reflects the data made available by corporations in public filings and publications; most of it has been compiled and verified by Equilar. At the time this dataset was compiled (summer 2019), Equilar’s researchers had not found an instance of a director or named executive officer who identified as trans, non-binary or with a they/them pronoun based on official documents available.

How is the LedBetter Index calculated?

The LedBetter Index is calculated on a 100-point scale. We take the percentage of women on the board, multiply that by 100 and the percentage of women on the executive team multiplied by 100, then take the average of the two numbers. The resulting index figure reflects the average of a company’s female representation on its board and its executive team.

What do these LedBetter Index scores mean?

The index figure reflects the average of a company’s female representation on its board and executive team. For example, if a company has a 50% female board and a 0% female executive team, its LedBetter Index score would be 25. We’ve highlighted companies that rank particularly high and low in terms of gender equality in leadership, including companies that have an Index score of zero — no women on their boards or executive teams. Check out our analysis here.

Why isn’t [X company] in the LedBetter database?

Entries in our database were culled from the S&P 500, Fortune 100, and Forbes Most Valuable Brands lists, and also include other popular consumer brands, particularly those that market their products to women. In some cases, companies were omitted due to scant or difficult-to-parse publicly available data, which was often the case for privately held companies and firms outside the U.S.

What should I do if I see an error or a problem with the data or website?

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