Career vs Family life

I recently came across an article in HR magazine claiming that more than a third of women do not think they can meet their career goals while still paying enough attention to their personal lives. We recently blogged about the lack of women on the board of UK firms – are the two connected?

Kenexa Research claims ‘traditionally, women play a larger role in managing their family responsibilities and, therefore, they are likely to feel pressure in trying to balance both work and family demands’.  Kenexa carried out a survey of over 1000 employees asking for their views on work-life balance; just over fifty per cent believed their employers supported their efforts to balance both their work life and personal life. Does being successful both in the workplace and at home depend then on the support you get from your employer? Read the rest of this entry »

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Mothers Betrayed?

I have to confess to being more than a little disappointed at the views expressed by Nichola Pease  in the press recently suggesting that women were ‘wrecking their careers’ by taking their full 12 months maternity leave.  Ms Pease , who a mother of three is deputy chairman of JO Hambro was giving evidence to a treasury select committee investigating sexism in the City.  “Legislation  is turning into a nightmare – I think we have got too long maternity leave – a year is too long!”  She also felt that the practice in Norway, where businesses are required by law to give 40% of their board positions to women, are flawed.

What really disappoints me is the implied view that the legislation we have in place is there in some way to pander to the fact that women have children.  What about the business case for harnessing and retaining the skills that so many women have in the workplace?  And what about the hard evidence?  US research has shown that Fortune 500 companies with the highest proportion of female directors are more profitable and efficient than those with the lowest. And according to research by McKinsey, the strategy consultancy, European organisations with the highest proportion of women in influential leadership roles, showed better than average financial performance.

Perhaps Ms Pease ought to take a look! 

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Input into research on recruiting women & minorities into IT departments

Rachel Dines at Forrester Research, an independent research company, is currently looking for input into a research report on recruiting women and minorities into IT infrastructure and operations (I&O) departments – networking, storage, databases, helpdesk, telecoms etc. She’s interested in talking to individuals who manage people working in those areas and who are happy to share their ideas on recruiting, retaining and promoting women in their teams.

The report is about best practices for recruiting and developing more diversity in infrastructure and operations departments around the world. E.g. why is I&O the least diverse department in most IT departments?

If you have any experience with this, please contact Rachel directly by the middle of September 2009:
Rachel Dines
Researcher – Infrastructure & Operations, Forrester Research, 400 Technology Square, Cambridge MA 02139
001 617 613 6081 or rdines@forrester.com
@RachelDines
http://www.forrester.com/rb/analyst/rachel_dines

Thanks so much!

What holds women back?

What holds women back from top IT jobs? Maggie Berry discusses in this Computer Weekly article:

http://www.computerweekly.com/Articles/2009/05/29/236225/what-holds-women-back-from-top-jobs-in-it.htm

Career challenges?

Just a reminder that W-Tech will be held on 24th June at the IET in London by womenintechnology.co.uk and the BCS. It promises to be a very informative and enjoyable event, with a day full of career development workshops which will tackle a wide range of issues that women in IT face in their careers. These range from how to behave in an all male team to political savvy and there will be an opportunity to meet a selection of top IT employers. This will be followed by an evening networking session and a panel discussion of successful women in technology. And even better, it’s completely free to attend!

Whether you’re a graduate, IT professional, returner or an employer wishing to grab a last minute exhibiting spot, please visit www.wtech-event.co.uk for more information and to register. Hope to see you there!