Monday, October 17, 2011

MEN are finished

Salary discrimination
The controversy whether it's a man's world still or not deserves to be on the agenda but the facts point in the opposite direction:

  • women earn 10-30% less than men
  • men utterly dominate such beefy industries as transport and mining. A hefty 11% of men work in construction; only 1% of women do. Women cluster in communications, retail and public administration, including education and health. See here a larger list of female dominated industries.
Pat Heim assures that until very recently the only truly female professions were (1) queen and (2) witch. The things have changed...
- Women 3.0
-  Women, Know Your Limits
 ...but females are still not scoring even with men in the workplace. Why?
  1. Discrimination
    1. Some men think women are less capable, and some laws treat the sexes differently
    2. Women also have fewer assets that can be turned into capital. Land is a prime example. In 16 poor countries, 55% of female-headed households own land, but 64% of male-headed ones do.
  2. Women are sometimes less qualified than men
  3. Women do not control their own time. In rich Austria and Italy, women do at least three times as much housework and child care as men. In poorer Cambodia, they do 50% more.
With a large degree of generalization, I think there are three constituencies that have highest stakes in this issue:

  • The society bears part of the blame: gender stereotyping begins from the moment parents and relatives start buying pink or blue clothes on finding our the sex of the baby. Not many know the difference between the concepts of "sex" and "gender" and many do not think that the baby itself does not really care what color pamper it is going to wear.

  • The business should also assume partial responsibility. Managers do not want to deal with pregnancies and child care leaves, so females in the workforce have been traditionally shunned (emphasis on "traditionally"), particularly in the senior echelons ("boys' clubs), and the board of directors have this affinity for the alpha-male style of leaders, and that's exactly whom they appoint CEO, and alpha-males like those alike, and the vicious circle makes another loop.

  • Finally, it is the individual (man or woman - does not, actually, matter): the stance you take, the force of your conviction and the passion, with which you are going to defend your beliefs --- they do make a difference.

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