This paper concerns the motivation of women in management for boardroom work, and the purpose was to explore factors that led women to refuse or accept actual requests to serve on a board of directors. Eleven women participated in this study: five who had refused an invitation to serve on a board; and six, who had accepted such invitations. All Participants had previously attended the Female Future Program conducted by the Norwegian Confederation of Business and Industry. Individual semi- structured interviews and a personality inventory measuring the “Big Five” traits were employed to compare the groups. The interviews were analysed using quantitative content analysis. Results showed that the theory of organizational citizenship behaviour was able to explain a difference between the two groups through its dimension of civic virtue, while the job characteristics model failed to do so. It is suggested that motivational theories concerning contextual performance may be more appropriate to explain women’s motivation to serve on a company board, than are theories concerning task performance. The decisive factor of whether managerial women serve on a board seems to be organizational characteristics, indicating the necessity for organizations to reflect more on how to attract the best people.In addition, it was found that women’s “whole lives”, that is life at work and also life outside of work, are of importance when they are considering an invitation to serve on a board. No differences in personality were found between the two groups.