Women start their careers in numbers comparable to men but as they move up the career ladder, they are severely underrepresented at every level, with the disparity greatest at the most senior levels.
Your Attitudes Matter
As a woman seeks career advancement, she should have two basic objectives: first, to be noticed as someone who is competent, confident, and capable of handling tasks and situations expected of positions senior to the one she now holds.
The second objective is to prevent her competence, confidence, and capability from being seen as characteristic of a pushy, unpleasant, and socially insensitive woman who is violating traditional gender stereotypes.
There is an obvious tension in these objectives, for it is hard to get yourself noticed as a leader without also being noticed as a woman who is not conforming to gender stereotypes. This tension is one of the primary reasons achieving a full measure of career success is so problematic for so many women.
Wife and husband team, Andrea (Andie) Kramer and Alton (Al) Harris, examine society's pervasive stereotypes and the discriminatory biases preventing women from overcoming obstacles, in their new book, BREAKING THROUGH BIAS: Communication Techniques for Women to Succeed at Work.
By writing together, Andie and Al are able to offer the unique dual perspective on critical issues. While their advice is specifically addressed to talented, ambitious women, it is also aimed at men--particularly men in senior leadership positions who are in a position to help.
Divided into four parts, BREAKING THROUGH BIAS, first lays out the common gender stereotypes that both men and women have; addresses the conversations women have and need to have with themselves; details how to communicate to convey confidence, competence, and social sensitivity; and finally, specific tips to communicating in different situations.