Summary of The Next Generation of Women Leaders

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Recommendation

Getting ahead in today’s competitive, cutthroat business world is tough, particularly for women, who account for only 3% of Fortune 500 CEOs, even though females comprise nearly half the US workforce. What are the reasons for the “thinning effect,” in which fewer women advance up the professional ladder? Selena Rezvani, a consultant on women and leadership, has the answer to that question and many more, based on her studies and interviews with 30 female executives from a variety of fields. Rezvani targets her advice to Generations X and Y women, who are now entering the marketplace and can most benefit from the experiences of those who have gone before them. She explores networking, negotiating, managing office politics and “integrating” (rather than balancing) your work and your life. getAbstract considers this thoroughly researched text a must read, not only for women launching their careers, but also for anyone, male or female, with leadership aspirations.

About the Author

Selena Rezvani is a consultant, coach and speaker on women and leadership.

 

Summary

Where Are the Women?

The issue of equality for women in the workforce may seem outdated. After all, women make up 46.5% of the American workforce. However, when you look more closely at the statistics, certain inequities become very clear: Almost 85% of Fortune 500 corporate officers are male, and only 3% of CEOs at these companies are female.

Each year, universities award women more than half of all US bachelor’s and master’s degrees, and almost half the students graduating from law school and medical school are women. Yet female employment in some fields exhibits the “thinning effect,” in which women fail to move up the professional ladder. Therefore, each generation of women entering the workforce has few female role models at the top. The barriers would-be distaff leaders face can be “social, economic, psychological – even generational”:

  • Social – Childhood conditioning teaches both boys and girls that women are not natural leaders. Society stereotypes women as passive, emotional and less intelligent than men.
  • Economic – Women still earn only 80% of what men earn for the same positions. Pay inequality can deter women from...

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