Bailey Fisher Executive Search & Women 4 Technology are partnering with the University of Cambridge to conduct an in-depth study seeking to understand the composite factors shaping successful founders and C-level leaders across the UK technology sector.


The research initially focused on female founders and CEOs, resulting in novel insights to be published later this year.

Bailey Fisher is now seeking involvement from male founders and C-level executives to participate in the research, which is conducted via an online questionnaire, taking less than 9 minutes to complete. Involvement is completely anonymous and the University of Cambridge and affiliated staff will not have access to individual email addresses or any other identifiable information.

Click here to take part in the research via the online questionnaire.

Using advanced analytics, the research looks at a broad range of factors influencing success as a founder/CEO such as cognitive flexibility, risk tolerance, impulsivity, demographics, role models and work flexibility, amongst others. One of the longer-term aims of the research is to suggest ways to help build more diverse and inclusive teams. It is well documented that diverse teams outperform homogenous ones, resulting in superior team dynamics and productivity, as well as financial success.

University of Cambridge research team
Toby Young, Head of Technology Practice at Bailey Fisher
Ann Fisher, CEO of Women 4 Technology

The research has been split into two phases to reduce as much as possible any gender bias in the wording and types of questions used. Research has shown how wording and types of questions in standard tests may be biased against women, leading to lower scores and inaccurate assessments.

Bailey Fisher has long been a strong advocate for equality in business, having launched its Women 4 Technology network in 2008. The executive search firm announced recently that 48% of its senior leadership placements over the past 6 months have been women.