Gender wage gaps increase over the span of men and women's careers, according to an analysis from PayScale.com. The wage gap begins at about 5% for recent college graduates. While single women under the age of 30 are likely to earn more than their male counterparts, women's earnings growth tends to cap when they hit age 39 versus age 48 for men.
Leaders tend to believe that the world of business is a meritocracy, but the truth is that biases remain, writes Leah Eichler. "The idea that, if women are underrepresented at the high echelons of corporations, it must be because they are less qualified, ignores one of the basic facts of life: gender stereotyping," says Leonard Mlodinow, author of "Subliminal: How Your Unconscious Mind Rules your Behavior."
Elissa Ellis-Sangster faced a different set of challenges than she had been used to when she became the executive director of the Forté Foundation. "I had gone from a staff of 25 to 30 people, where I had to talk all day, to having to make an entire organization happen. It was a lot more hands on," she said. But she persevered, and the organization has thrived. Ellis-Sangster also talks about her life as a new mother and the experiences that got her interested in graduate education.
There has been much speculation about why there aren't more women traders in the financial world, but increased diversity would be good for the industry, writes John Coates. "Importantly, the financial world desperately needs more long-term, strategic thinking, and the data indicate that women excel at this." Institutions might be able to get more women into trading by taking a longer-term approach to evaluating traders' performance, he writes.
Women have been outpacing men when it comes to starting new businesses in recent decades, and they are expected to create the majority of new small-business jobs during the next few years. Many women have turned to business ownership because they are dissatisfied with the corporate world. "Making the decision to not follow a system, or someone else's rules has allowed me to really dig into what my own strengths and gifts are without spending time feeling jaded or wasteful," said entrepreneur Ishita Gupta.
Texas Instruments is an example of how a company can aid the growth of female employees within its IT ranks and corporate leadership. However, its efforts aren't typical among corporations, according to industry watchers. The company's initiative "offers a role model for other businesses, because its effort differs markedly from past programs aimed more broadly at preparing high-potential women for management roles," says Betty Spence of the National Association for Female Executives.
If you want to ensure your MBA internship turns into a job offer, then avoid blunders such as failing to network with anyone in the office and never getting feedback, experts say. "If a student completes the internship without (a) acquiring new skills, (b) developing a list of new contacts and professional relationships and mentors, it was time wasted," writes Vicki Lynn, senior vice president for client talent strategy and employer branding at Universum.
The lifetime value of an MBA degree is at about the same level that it was last year, an analysis suggests. Average salaries increased for graduates of top-earning schools, but salaries stayed about the same at other institutions. "The effects of the Great Recession on the labor market for MBAs can still be felt today, a full three years after the official end of the recession," said PayScale's Katie Bardaro.
Trying to do too much and being a perfectionist are two ways you could be keeping yourself from getting more done, according to panelists Monday at a session during The New York Times Small Business Summit. "When we obsess over perfection, that's where the stress comes in," Constant Contact's Wendi Caplan-Carroll said. Barry Moltz said that "you can get incredible power in your life by just doing one thing and not trying to do multiple things."
Claire Dorland-Clauzel is the doyenne behind the Michelin brand and its stacked-tire ad icon Michelin Man. Michelin's global branding director, and the first female in the brand's history to serve on the executive committee, Dorland-Clauzel plans to help Michelin navigate past the rough global economy. "When you have a crisis, a strong brand is what consumers turn to. It's true that a Michelin tire is a little more expensive than another brand, but you have safety and quality guarantees, and that's what we have to communicate," she says in this interview.
As women start to break the glass ceiling, they're changing the way male counterparts manage their teams, writes Dana Theus. Male-oriented leadership culture is slowly giving way to a gender-balanced management style, with individual bosses seeking to fuse stereotypically male and female traits into a balanced and cohesive approach to leadership. "As individuals and groups, the world is calling us to blend the gifts and abilities both genders bring to leadership," Theus writes.
As women climb the corporate ladder, they're likely to face challenges to their authority from men unused to working for women, writes Tanvi Gautam. It's critical that women push back and don't buy into the notion that they're somehow less able to lead than their male counterparts. "[P]ower is never taken away, it is relinquished. Make sure you hold onto yours!" Gautam advises.
Forté Foundation is a consortium of leading multinational corporations,
top business schools in the U.S. and abroad, and the Graduate Management
Admission Council (GMAC). Forté has become a powerful change agent directing
women towards leadership roles in business and enabling corporations to more effectively
reach and retain top female talent. It is the only organization that provides a national
infrastructure for women at all stages of the career continuum to access the information,
scholarship support and networking connections they need to succeed in business careers.
Learn more at