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During 2012 the issue of women became a daily news headline. Debated, discussed and occasionally celebrated. The old issues of women right to abortion resurfaced in political debate. Could women have it all became hot topic with resignation and follow up article from Anne-Marie Slaughter. While employment of Marissa Mayer of Yahoo at late stage of her pregnancy according to her showed “evolving thinking of corporate board members”. Sheryl Sandberg of FaceBook voiced her concern for women and discussed extensively existing cultural barriers. On the other hand the visibility and number of women in C-level positions continued to increase. While the female members of the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate reached highest in the history.
The unprecedented attention to women observed in 2012 is an indication of increasing power of women as voters and consumers. It is a common knowledge that women were determinant factor in presidential election. While as consumers their decision making and spending power have continued to increase. This is clearly evident in ecommerce. What is more women are the key players for the most successful consumer web. Here, they outnumbered men by over 70%.
Yet, their number in the c- suite jobs remain limited. Beyond all the debate about fair play and equal opportunity, here the key determinant factor would be the performance. After all numbers speak loudly. The good news is women are making record numbers here at least in some industries. For example, “Women hedge fund managers performed ahead of the industry through 3Q 2012. The Rothstein Kass Women in Alternative Investments Hedge Index produced a year-to-date net return of 8.95 percent, in comparison to the HFRX Global Hedge Fund Index, which generated a 2.69 percent net return through September”. It is this type of report that convinces me that we are reaching a tipping point when it comes to women equality at least in Alternative Investment industry and I am hopeful that the corporate America will follow.
Pari Esfandiari – WorldNewsVine