Sexism in the Workplace


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  • 60% percent of women feel excluded from formal and informal networking opportunities, compared to 4% of men.1/3 of women cite a lack of influential mentors as a major barrier to advancement. Working mothers are held to higher standards than working fathers and are often criticized for being insufficiently committed parents or professionals.Women suffer a per child wage penalty of 5%, after controlling for human capital and occupational factors (Budig & England, 2001; Anderson et al., 2003)
  • Price Waterhouse v. Hopkins: Anne Hopkins was up for promotion at her firm. She billed more hours and brought in more business than any other candidate, and clients had given her high ratings. Opposition to her partnership was based not on objective performance measures, but on subjective assessments of her "interpersonal skills" and "social grace." The partners found her "overly aggressive" and "unduly harsh." One partner thought that she needed a "course in charm school"; another felt that she "overcompensated" for being a woman. Several of the male associates under consideration for partnership were also characterized as "abrasive" and "overbearing." No one suggested charm school for them. At the time of the decision, all but seven of the firm's 662 partners were male. Although Hopkins ultimately prevailed, it took seven years and five levels of judicial decision making with two trial and three appellate court rulings.
  • We know a few things:Jobs with set pay-scales, which are more common right out of college, prevent gender discrimination in wages Women are not asking for / negotiating raises as they climb the ladder Women are getting more education
  • Sexism in the Workplace

    1. 1. Women in the workplace<br />We’ve come a long way, but sexism is still a very real problem.<br />
    2. 2. Women in the workplace<br />“Sexism is not a glass ceiling; it’s a labyrinth of microinequities that add up over a lifetime.”<br />-Professor Cuddy<br />
    3. 3. Women in the workplace<br />Female (55%) and male (57%) senior managers aspire equally to the most senior role (CEO or equivalent), regardless of whether they have children under 18 living at home with them. (Catalyst Research)<br />
    4. 4. Barriers<br />But women face more barriers than their male counterparts:<br /> Limited access to informal networks<br />60% percent of women feel excluded from formal and informal networking opportunities, compared to 4% of men<br /> Gender-based stereotyping<br /> Lack of role models<br />1/3 of women cite a lack of influential mentors as a major barrier to advancement<br /> Motherhood <br />Women suffer a per child wage penalty of 5%, after controlling for human capital and occupational factors (Budig & England, 2001; Anderson et al., 2003)<br />
    5. 5. Gender Stereotypes: Competence<br />Despite considerable progress over the last quarter century, women workers are still frequently perceived as less competent than men.<br />Resumes are evaluated more favorably when they carry male rather than female names<br />People more readily credit men with leadership ability and accept men as leaders.<br />In one study where subjects were shown slides of a man seated at the head of a table for a meeting, they assumed that he was the leader. They did not make the same assumption when the person in that seat was a woman.<br />Columbia Journal of Gender and Law<br />
    6. 6. Gender Stereotypes: Competence<br />Stereotypes particularly strong in settings where women are underrepresented (banking, technology) and too few counterexamples are present to challenge conventional assumptions. <br />These settings often yield polarized assessment. Of average and below employees, women get disproportionately lower evaluations than their male counterparts. <br />
    7. 7. Gender Stereotypes<br />Femininity: Mismatch between the qualities traditionally associated with women and those associated with professional success.<br />BUT… women are punished when they adopt “masculine” styles of leadership.<br />Columbia Journal of Gender and Law.<br />
    8. 8. Gender Stereotypes<br />Women are rated lower as leaders when they adopt authoritative, "masculine" styles, particularly when the evaluators are men, or when the role is one typically occupied by men.<br />Women often internalize these stereotypes, which creates a psychological glass ceiling.<br />
    9. 9. Case in point: Heidi vs. Howard<br />NYU Stern students were given a case about a VC who maintains an extensive personal and professional network. The VC leverages this network to benefit both themselves and others. <br />One section is given the case with protagonist as Howard Roizen, the other section given case with Heidi Roizen.<br />
    10. 10. How power-hungry, self-promoting, and disingenuous was Roizen?<br />
    11. 11. Would you like, hire, enjoy working with Roizen?<br />
    12. 12. Sexism at Harvard Business School<br />HBS around since 1908, but only open to women since 1965<br />Women make up <40% students<br />30% of section B first year professors<br />Women only represented 6% 2009 Baker Scholars (highest honors)<br />Of the students in the class of 2010 asked to leave at the end of their first year, 55% were women even though women only make up 38% of the class<br />
    13. 13. A meritocratic world? Not so much.<br />People want to believe that in the absence of special treatment, individuals generally get what they deserve.<br />So if women are underrepresented in powerful positions, the “meritocratic worldview” explanation is that they lack the necessary qualifications.<br />In turn, this prevents women from getting assignments that would demonstrate their capabilities, establishing a self-fulfilling cycle.<br />
    14. 14. The Good News: We’re Better Off Than Our Mothers<br />
    15. 15. Wage Gap by Age<br />The earnings difference between women and men varies with age, with younger women more closely approaching pay equity than older women.<br />Catalyst Research, 2008<br />
    16. 16. Wage Gap Globally<br />Catalyst Research<br />
    17. 17. Female CEOs<br />Ursula Burns <br />Xerox <br />IndraNooyi<br />PepsiCo<br />Carol Bartz, Yahoo!<br />As of January 2010, only15 FORTUNE 500 companies were run by women, and only 14 FORTUNE 501-1000 companies had women CEOs<br />Janet Robinson <br />The New York Times<br />Irene Rosenfeld Kraft<br />
    18. 18. Female CEOs<br />Some worry that progress has slowed…<br />
    19. 19. Females on Boards<br />Some worry that progress has slowed…<br />
    20. 20. How can we make sure that our daughters are better off than us?<br />
    21. 21. What can you do? Men:<br />Awareness<br />Showcase the successes of women leaders –especially in stereotypically masculine fields<br />Avoid making comments that objectify or demean women<br />Support reversals of the traditional allocation of domestic roles<br />Encourage your employer to offer paid parental leave for fathers<br />
    22. 22. What can you do? Women:<br />Serve as a role-model and mentor to other women<br />Negotiate your salary<br />Graduating masters students: 57% of men, 7% of women negotiated above initial offer. Negotiators received $4000 more (Babcock and Laschever, 2003).<br /> Encourage female-friendly policy<br />
    23. 23. Questions?<br />