Women in the U.S. Don't Want to Lead

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quicklist: curated
quote: "One of the ways that women have advanced is by outsourcing childcare to extended family as well as using low cost domestic labour in a way that is not as readily available to women in the West."


their: The Guardian
their_title: Are women in the West being left behind on leadership?
their_url: http://www.theguardian.com/women-in-leadership/2013/oct/23/women-in-west-left-behind-leadership
their_copy: When we talk about women in leadership we often mean women in America and Europe. And yet some of the latest trends in women's leadership internationally and in emerging markets may tell a more significant story.

According to economist Sylvia Hewlett, author of Winning the War for Talent in Emerging Markets, women are pulling ahead in unexpected ways. She points to the fact that they make up 55% of college graduates in Brazil, Russia, India and China (BRIC countries).


11% of CEOs in the largest 250 Indian companies are female and in Brazil they make up 12% in the largest companies. In the US and UK it is a mere 3-5%.

"A big difference between BRIC countries and the US is that there is much more overt ambition – something like 80% of women in the pipeline in professional careers in China and India for instance, see themselves as ambitious and want a top job. They all are 'leaning in' like crazy," says Hewlett.

theirCTA: Read the full story here.

our_copy: There are plenty of women in the U.S. who are ambitious and would like to rise to executive and decision-making roles within the workforce and government. Let’s just remember our last presidential election, in which Hillary Clinton ran, or Marissa Mayer's recent ascent to CEO of Yahoo.


We want to get there. If Sylvia Hewlett, interviewed in the story above, considers college enrollment and graduation rates a sign of ambition, then look at our rates.

Don't get us wrong. We congratulate women in the BRIC countries for making their way to the top.


But this article makes it seem as if they are surpassing those of us in the U.S. because we just aren't leaning in enough. If that is true, it’s not because of a lack of desire and effort on the part of U.S. women.

The BRIC countries are emerging markets that are growing nicely and that provides a distinct amount of opportunity. The U.S. economy, on the other hand, continues to struggle. Cultural perceptions also play a role. Twitter's current all-male board is a prime example that even in a high-tech U.S. industry that bases success on the best ideas, there is still only one way of thinking when it comes to who leads. For women to "truly lean" in in the West, these things have to change at a fundamental level.

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