Why is women getting a break still controversial?

We all get that we are way beyond wanting to be the "token woman" in a role or on a management team. And that no woman wants to have any doubts about her individual abilities questioned because she has been "helped" to advance because of a program. But the reality is that women do not advance in the same numbers as men and that there is a gender wage-gap.

There are always multiple reasons cited for these issues which are all true and relevant, and emotive. Just take a look at some of the comments that people have posted in response to the story today in Australia's Daily Telegraph newspaper, http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/news/job-for-the-boys/story-e6freuy9-1225854970277 re the initiative to get men to talk to men about helping women in business. I thought I had travelled through some worm hole back to the 1960's...but no I checked, and these were all written in 2010. So this is still an emotive issue, for sure!

In a recent report in Australia, the National Centre for Economic Modelling found that 60% of the reason for the gender pay gap of 17% is due to being a woman. But the costs are not restricted to women...it estimates that this costs the Australian economy $93 billion each year. That seems a pretty rational arguement to look at the multiple and complex reasons to examine, discuss and develop solutions to this issue. And that needs to be done by all sexes. It's not just a "woman's issue".

Congratulations to Elizabeth Broderick, Australia's Sex Discrimination Commissioner and the business leaders who are tackling this issue with the Male Champions for Change group.

But let's not just leave it to the leaders...every Career Chick can make a difference by learning more about how business works and empowering ourselves to be in the best position to move forward.

What can you do this week to improve your bargaining power?

Karen

Collaboration can be fun!

Hi all

I've just got back from beautiful, but earthquake wary, San Francisco. Apart from providing the chance to visit the picturesque Napa Valley I also had the chance to collaborate with authors Fabian Venter and Blaine Dehmlow on their new projects.

Regardless of the fact that we have such different topics-Career advice, small business marketing and spirituality it was a tremendous chance to share experiences and be inspired.

For most of us, sitting at a computer for many hours is not the most creative environment. Nor the one where we get most of our ideas. Most people say that they get their best ideas in the shower, driving in the car or when they are talking to others. Mine are definitely in the shower!

Whilst there are all sorts of obligations at work (emails, reports, forms to be filled out) it's good to take time to be creative and come up with some ideas that will add to the value you provide in your role.

A great trick is to stand-up from behind the computer, find some like-minded people who you admire and talk to them about what they are doing. You just never know the ideas that will be generated by having a chat!

Until next time Career Chicks (& guys!)

Karen