token women

Queen Bees revisited

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P1010435Reading a “Women need not fear female bosses” headline in the Sunday Times reminded me of Putin saying ” the West need not fear Russia” earlier in the week.

Researchers at Columbia University in New York are saying that the real reason for a shortage of women at the top is down to men determined to hold on to their power. The findings are being presented to a conference for heads of girls’ schools.

This contradicts earlier research from 1973 that suggested women in positions of authority treated female subordinates more critically and essentially held back their promotions.

This study of top management teams at 1,500 companies was carried out over a 20-year period (I wonder if they took into account changing attitudes over two decades?).

They found that when a women was appointed as CEO it was more likely other women would be promoted into senior positions.

However when women were appointed to senior jobs below CEO the likelihood of other women following their example was reduced by 50%.

Analysing their data the researchers concluded that it was most likely men excluding women from the boardroom.

Women face an implicit quota, whereby firms seek to maintain a small number of women in their top management team, usually only one” say the researchers.

So the researchers concluded that the “Queen Bee syndrome” is a myth.

And on a positive note female bosses pay staff more, regardless of their gender.