March 17, 2022Read More
In celebration of women’s history month, we’re featuring five articles highlighting female impact in the business world and beyond.
The FT highlights the tremendous gender pay gap that continues to impact women globally. The average retirement savings of a 65-year-old UK woman is only one-fifth of the average of a same-age man. In Denmark, three women founded “Female Invest” in 2017, a financial education platform that now includes members from 95 countries and helps bridge the financial literacy education gap. Investment instruments aren’t sold on the platform; it merely provides independent financial advice and education. In addition to the platform, the Danish trio has also written a debut book: Girls Just Wanna Have Funds.
Chicago Booth’s Coalition of Minorities in Business and Student Advisory Council brought together three accomplished Black alumnae to address the value of diversity in business. The three alumnae shared their robust experiences tackling challenges, addressing inclusion in the workplace, and finding mentors and sponsors. One piece of advice from the panelists was to focus on building your own “board of directors” who can support you throughout your career. The key is to find advisors who can share the wisdom gained from their own mistakes so you can avoid these obstacles in your own career path.
Another Booth article features Maureen Dowdle, a career and leadership coach at Booth who sat down with three EMBA alumnae to share career advice: 1. Actively negotiate to get what you want. One alum recalls a key learning from Professor Ginzel’s negotiations class: “you never get what you don’t ask for.” 2. Identify skills to help you through tough times. The key insight to moving to the next level in your career is to learn self-reflection skills, adaptability, and resilience. 3. Find focus but think about the trade-offs. Dowdle says: “It is important to have a holistic approach when thinking about career goals”. Students need to analyze how reaching a particular goal will impact other areas of their lives. 4. Practice the art of networking. The best time to make a friend is before you need a friend. Extend your network to those you have something in common with and invest time in getting to know a person before asking for a favor.
The FT highlights the struggles of women founders in accessing capital to scale and fund their startups. According to PitchBook, the percentage of venture capital funding that went to female-led start-ups in the U.S. fell from 2.4% in 2021 to 1.9% in 2022. In FT’s article, Dafria, chief executive of Angels Den Funding, recounts that VCs take early bets based on founders’ showmanship and confidence. Typically, Dafria sees female entrepreneurs pitching in a way that under-promises and over-performs, largely from being intimidated as the only woman in the room.
Stephanie Cohen is one of Goldman Sachs’ most senior executives. Her inspiring story starts as an M&A analyst in 1999 and follows her 20+ year progression at Goldman through different leadership roles. Cohen says people should regularly ask themselves whether they like their job and if they are learning something new. “If you decide to be here, and decide to do what you’re doing, you own it.” She is also pragmatic when it comes to combining career and family life. When she and her husband planned to have children, he asked: “Which one of us is going to quit?”; her response: “Why is one of us going to quit?”
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