Millennium Mom

Monday, January 12, 2009

Women Supporting Women

Today I went to a lunch at work sponsored by the Advancement of Women's task force. Perhaps some of you are thinking - what is that? or what a name? or why do you need that? Well reality is, that despite all our best efforts, without such a network, women would not advance at the same rate as men.

Today at P&G we hire in about 52% females among our managers. Yet when you get to hirer levels this number falls greatly, even though we have hired at least 50% for over a decade. Some of it is natural choice, women choosing to "off track" or leave their job when they have children. Another portion would happen regardless, like women leaving to move closer to family. And some of it is preventable, it is females choosing to leave P&G for another job. This task force's goal is to retain our best talent and not lose them for professional reasons.

The lunch today had a female general manager, which at P&G is a very senior level speaking to women about her career. She chose to focus on what she feels are natural female strengths that you can use to our advantage and three watch-outs, in an effort to have Women Supporting Women.

In total honesty, I wrote my book because I didn't see enough role models on top of me at P&G when it came to work-life balance. While they were brilliant business women and had braved new paths in many areas (like being the first female to do xxx or yyy) they often made personal sacrifices related to family to do that. I knew that I would not be willing, nor would be husband to do that. While we make personal sacrifices every day, I would not sacrifice a family with respect to when to start one, how big of one and so on.

So when I managed to "manage it all" as I advanced and my family grew, I felt it was really important to share these tips with others, it would be selfish to keep them to myself. And that was the genesis for my book. The tips are simple and pragmatic, anyone can put them to use (including stay at home moms, dads, singles and so on). More importantly they make life easier, as the easier life is made, the easier it becomes. When you work for a company like P&G with fairly high powered and high stress jobs, you must be sharp and efficient, so any tips to allow for that are beneficial. On top of natural smarts, intuition and others skills comes balance and effectiveness in your holistic life - which enables you to be the best manager you can be.

So as a women, I wanted to support other women. I hope each of you reading this chooses to do the right thing, then maybe we won't need task forces with funny names to ensure we are equally represented at the top.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home