Why a lack of diversity is bad for corporate boards | Women are finding opportunities as COOs | Assertive or not, female negotiators face backlash, study finds
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August 28, 2013
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Guardian CEO: Am I doing something interesting?
Guardian Life Insurance CEO Deanna Mulligan says she has based her career around asking herself whether she's doing something interesting that is meaningful to society. When she was in business school, she says, she never considered being CEO of a Fortune 500 company because no women held such positions, but that is changing. In this CNN "Leading Women" feature, other executives also weigh in on career success. Xerox CEO Ursula Burns says, "If you're in a bad company, leave it; if they don't want to hear you, you shouldn't stay there." CNN (8/20)
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Leadership at Work
Why a lack of diversity is bad for corporate boards
Only one-fifth of Fortune 100 board seats are occupied by women, and minorities are similarly underrepresented, according to research by the Alliance for Board Diversity. This disparity means that companies are missing out on the benefits of diversity, experts say. "Boards that are more diverse generally make better decisions," explained Eric Peterson of the Society for Human Resource Management. "Typically, groupthink is the enemy of good decision making." NBC News (8/16)
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Women are finding opportunities as COOs
Sheryl Sandberg is one of the more visible examples of a larger trend that has seen more and more women serving as chief operating officers, writes Leslie Bradshaw, COO of Guide. However, there is a potential downside to the trend, she notes. "At face value, [acting as] a powerful foil to the male CEO rock star is good visibility for female executives, but it could also be a dangerous extension of the hackneyed suggestion that 'behind every great man stands a great woman,'" she writes. National Public Radio/All Tech Considered blog (8/9)
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Assertive or not, female negotiators face backlash, study finds
Research suggests that women who negotiate are viewed in a negative manner regardless of whether they are assertive or deferential. Whereas the assertive women were perceived to be "overstepping into male roles," women who were not assertive "were attributed negative feminine characteristics" and viewed as weak or gullible, the researchers found. These findings may help shed light on the causes of the gender wage gap, the researchers say. WomenOnBusiness.com (7/25)
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Female bosses get paid less, study shows
Of the 2,500 best-paid executives at big U.S. firms, just 198 are women, according to a new analysis. That suggests that even those women who make it to the C-suite aren't getting the same levels of compensation enjoyed by their male counterparts. "Women tend to start out their careers getting paid less, and that gap often never gets made up, even at the most senior levels," says Pat Cook, president of executive search firm Cook & Co. Bloomberg (8/13)
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Forté Foundation listed as a top site for women by Forbes
The Forté Foundation is among Forbes' 100 Best Websites for Women. In its list, the site notes, "Major corporations and top business schools created the Forté Foundation to direct talented women towards leadership roles in business, providing the tools and resources necessary for success." Forbes (8/20)
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Forté Foundation News
2013 Forté MBA forums for women – free registration
Thinking about getting an MBA? Attend a Forté Forum for free in one of 10 cities in North America and Europe to:
  • Connect with admissions staff from leading business schools in North America and Europe.
  • Learn ways you can finance your MBA.
  • Find the school that's right for you.
  • Hear advice and stories from MBA women across industries and career stage.
  • Learn how an MBA can help you succeed in virtually any career or industry.
The cost to attend a Forté Forum is free for pre-registrants. Onsite registration is $5. Review the schedule of dates and locations.
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From College to Career
Focus on the details to ace an interview
Focus on details like handshake and posture to impress an interviewer, says interview coach Stuart Taylor. In this article, Taylor shares additional tips, such as researching an organization before the interview and displaying how one's skills match the company's needs. "Little things like sending a thank-you note an hour after your interview or a firm handshake are noticeable. They make a difference," he said. U.S. News & World Report (8/5)
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Consider an employer's perspective during a job search
Job seekers should think like an employer while job searching, workplace expert Heather Huhman writes in this blog post. Huhman advises candidates to think about how they fit into an organization and learn as much as possible about the company's goals, mission and values. "Employers are looking for quality candidates, so you must look for quality employers. Make sure you apply to positions where you can see your career moving forward," Huhman suggests. GlassDoor.com/Glassdoor Blog (8/6)
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MBA Outlook
Preparing your resume for admissions officers
If a school asks you to provide a copy of your resume, you should touch it up first, writes Stacy Blackman. Admissions officers are more interested in your capacity to lead and work with others than in your expertise in any particular area. "They want to see skills that are transferable to almost any industry," she writes. U.S. News & World Report/MBA Admissions: Strictly Business blog (8/2)
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For many MBA applicants, location is key
Research indicates that about half of MBA applicants are selecting schools based on where they intend to get a job after graduating, writes Matt Symonds, chief editor of MBA50.com. The trend is likely due to the fact that the economy has yet to fully bounce back from the recession, he writes. "[W]hile the appetite for business school education is still there, those willing to invest the necessary time, effort, and money are looking hard at what return on investment they will experience, not just in the long term, but as soon as they graduate," he writes. Bloomberg Businessweek/Getting In blog (7/29)
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Overseas travel can enhance an online MBA program
Some online MBA programs offer the opportunity to travel overseas on trips that allow students to network with business leaders and, in some cases, professors and other students. "If you don't really look at the global aspect of business you really miss out," said Jessica Sellers, who earned her degree this spring. U.S. News & World Report (8/13)
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Women of the World
Lack of work-family balance deters women from the workplace
The lack of family-friendly workplaces is causing the number of women in the U.S. labor force to stagnate, experts say. Only 74% of women are active in the workforce, about the same number as 25 years ago, they say. "We're losing the valuable resources of highly trained women," Cornell University economist Francine Blau says. CNNMoney/Fortune (8/13)
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Are women less likely to enjoy their success?
In addition to getting paid less than their male counterparts, powerful women also tend to experience fewer emotional benefits from their success, research suggests. Differences in societal expectations, media portrayals and support networks are among the possible explanations for this phenomenon. "Women who sacrifice and lean in yet do not feel the subjective rewards of their positional authority may ultimately be less inclined to stay in those positions," according University of Toronto sociologists who have investigated the issue. The Atlantic online (8/12)
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[I]f you're finding it hard to be ambitious for yourself, find something else to be ambitious for that helps propel you forward."
-- Henna Inam, CEO of Transformational Leadership, writing at Forbes
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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 www.fortefoundation.org.
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