Thursday, March 29, 2007

My Position In Action


Most business women are not held back by their lack of commitment, instead factors such as gender bias, stereotyping, double standards, unequal access to exclusive networks and lack of female mentors are all responsible for women’s dismal presence in the business world.

In this paragraph, I am trying to establish how women's commitment is perceived by organizations.....

When looking for potential employees, employers look for individuals who will not only add value to the organization, but who will also remain dedicated to their duties and responsibilities. Although studies have “established that men and women experience similar levels of organizational commitment” (The Effects of Gender), employers still remain hesitate to bring women into their companies. According to, several hiring managers believe that the level of commitment women bring into workplace is simply not enough. One human resource executive for the company WorldWIT Inc states, "There is this huge perception that women are burdened with entanglements outside of work related to children or parents and that they'll bear the brunt of the responsibility so much that they'll neglect their work."(Career Journal). Not only do employees believe women will neglect their work, they also question whether or not “she is going to be able to do what the job requires” (Career Journal.)

Monday, March 26, 2007

My Quick Literature Review

There are 8 Sources I would like to briefly summarize in this literature review. Source #1 comes from the website Feminist Majority. This site does an excellent job at explaining some of the causes of the glass ceiling and also provides readers with myths and facts regarding women in business. Source #2 comes from and is titled “Midlevel Women Execs face Job-Search Hurdles.” The hurdles that are addressed in this article include networking difficulties, limits on the types of jobs women will accept, and gender-based stereotypes and biases. Source #3 comes from The CPA Journal Online and reads, “Executive Women in Finance Overcoming Challenges and Looking Ahead.” Some of the issues found in this journal include, gender biases, work diversity, and finding strong mentors. Source #4 comes from a blog site title Free Democracy and is titled “How Carly Lost Her Gender Groove”. This article was originally printed in the New York Times and was reposted in its entirety on the Free Democracy blog site. In it, readers learn about some of the bumps, potholes, and dead ends that prominent CEO, Carleton Fiorina encountered during her journey to the top. Source #5 is a peer reviewed journal titled “Corporate Initiatives for Advancing Women.” This journal argues that although the women of today are more educated than they were 20 years ago, they are not advancing to the top as quickly as they should be. The journal identifies several barriers that have slowed women’s career advancements. These barriers include things such as lack of access to line positions and exclusion from channels of communication. Source #6 is also a peer reviewed journal titled “The Effects of Gender on Job Satisfaction and Organizational Commitment in Kuwait”. This study discovered that men and women display the same amount of organizational commitment and job satisfaction. Source #7 came from The Christian Science Monitor website and was titled “The Truth Behind Women Opting out”. This article was responding to an article posted in the New York Times which declared that there was a significant number of women exiting the workforce in order to stay home with their children. In “The Truth Behind Women Opting Out", the author explains that women are not leaving the workforce to tend to their families. On the contrary, women are pursing their careers more than ever because of their families. And finally, source #8 came out of Business Week and is titled “As Managers, Women Rule”. According to this article, studies have found women to be better leaders because they are more compassionate, better listeners and believe in consensus.

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

My Position

Through out the course of my research on corporate women, I have stumbled upon articles implying that women’s lack of commitment is responsible for their slow advancement up the corporate ladder. According to these sources, motherhood creates feelings of complacency amongst women, causing them to no longer pursue their pre-baby careers. Women’s lack of dedication is not the only factor that is said to hinder their chances of obtaining executive positions, some sources believe that women simply do not display the confidence and audacity that is necessary to make it in business. Although some business women may fit this description, not all women possess those unimpressive characteristics. Most importantly, one must understand that these two qualities alone are not responsible for the deficiency of top executive women in our world today. What I want to argue in paper #3 is that most business women are not being held back by their lack of commitment or self-assurance, instead factors such as gender bias, stereotyping, double standards, unequal access to exclusive networks, and lack of female mentors are all responsible for women’s dismal presence in the business world.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

Women overlooked In the Sales Industry

In an article titled Corporate Initiatives for Advancing Women, author Mary Mattis discusses the different barriers that women encounter in various industries. Research has found that many women shy away from sales jobs because they believe companies are less likely to hire female candidates. Can women’s perceptions about the sales industry be true? Unfortunately, their perceptions are very true. Studies have found that men are more likely to obtain a sales position than women. Often times, sales managers tend to hire candidates that they connect with and who are similar to them. Since most sales managers tend to be white males, these individuals tend to recruit white males. Women are not only overlooked as potential sales managers because of their race and gender, but also because of misconceptions that are associated with them. Data indicates that recruiting managers believe women cannot handle a job in sales because they are not knowledgeable in products found in the automotive, sports and machinery industry. These managers also avoid hiring women because they feel that a job in sales is “too demanding” for them, and customers tend to feel uneasy when working with females sales representatives. The findings in this article definitely strengthen the notion of the glass ceiling. Women are not able to excel in certain industries because they are not even given a chance. They are unjustly overlooked as candidates because of old fashion prejudices, and until these prejudices are destroyed, women will continue to be pushed into lower level job positions.

Wednesday, March 7, 2007

My First Contribution to Wiki!

I decided to start my first Wikipedia page on Kathy Seifert, a business women not widely known. Here's what the page has so far. . .

Kathi Seifert was named one of America’s Top Businesswomen by Forbes in 2001. In 1971, she received her bachelor’s degree at Valparaiso University in Indiana. Following her graduation, she worked for Procter & Gamble doing marketing research. She later applied for a position at the paper product company Kimberly Clark. After being rejected from Kimberly Clark, she took on a marketing job with Fort Howard Paper. On March 27, 1978, Kimberly Clark called Seifert and she began her career with company by selling paper goods to motels and other businesses. Two years later, she began marketing consumer products for the company. In 1991, she became the executive vice president for Kimberly Clark, and is one of the highest paid officers in the company. She currently manages the Kimberly Clark's global personal care business.

Source: Forbes Magazine "America's Top Business Women" 3.28.01

Tuesday, March 6, 2007

Are More Career Women 'Opting Out'?

Are the business women of today more likely to leave the workforce in order to take on the jobs of house wives or mothers? From 2001 to 2005, there was a noticeable decline of women in the workforce. Back in 2003, New York Times Reporter Lisa Belkin wrote that this decline indicated that an "opt-out revolution" was taking place amongst women. In reality, women were not, and are not, "opting out" of their careers to tend to their families. Studies have found that the women of today, compared to the women in 1984, are less likely to leave their jobs for their loved ones. Actually, women are now more inclined to keep their careers because they must provide for their families needs. So, if women weren't opting out for family reasons, what explains the dwindling number of women in the workforce during 2001- 2005? During that time period, the labor market grew weak, causing women's labor rates, and even men's labor rates, to drop. Although the declining number of women in the workforce can be justified by the occurrence of a recession, I find it interesting that women were automatically viewed as "opting out". Like I mentioned above, men's labor rates also declined during that 4 year period yet nobody declared that an "opt-out revolution" was occurring amongst men. I believe that women are constantly perceived as being less committed to their careers, which is why society is so quick to assume women will drop everything for their families. Because women are believed to lack devotion, companies often times don't view them as valuable assets. One faculty member at a California University believes that "most mothers do not opt out . . . they are pushed out by workplace inflexibility, the lack of supports, and a workplace bias against mothers."