Editor’s Note: NIU Business freshman Crystal Higgins (pictured left) provides this next guest post. Crystal shares her experience meeting and talking with NIU alumnus and CEO Janet Pucino, who spoke about the glass ceiling in the corporate world. …an incredibly timely topic given GM’s appointment of its first woman CEO.
At the end of her post, Crystal also shares a bit about herself, along with her contact information.
Bias Against Women in Corporate- A Book Discussion with NIU alum Janet Pucino by Crystal D. Higgins
I had the privilege of meeting Janet Pucino over a luncheon and book discussion, through my organization Women in Business Professions, back in October. This NIU alum has been the COO, CIO CTO and VP of some very high profiled companies, and is currently the CEO and founder of her own company Deep Canyon Media.
Janet Pucino has worked in many different areas of corporate but has found one common thread in the climb to the executive board. Pucino has written Not in The Club: An Executive Woman’s Journey Through the Business World and mentioned that the common thread in the executive level had this sort of “boys club,” which is very exclusive especially with its practice of excluding women. Now I know this may sound like a clique or some high school cliché, but it is the unfortunate reality of corporate. The men in this exclusive club help one another succeed, and continue to stay at the top. For example, Pucino mentions in her book, that there are zero women on Apple Inc.’s, senior executive team, and only one woman is on their board. This is truly disheartening to know that even today, women are still not equal. Pucino was not only informative but enlightening into the unknown underbelly of the corporate executive world. She mentioned the difficulty that women have climbing up the corporate ladder, and wrote about the reality of a woman’s battle through corporate. Pucino’s novel didn’t male bash, but simply gave facts and helpful advice and tips on how to deal with the bias within a company or an organization.
During the book discussion I wrote down some of the many tips and advice that she had for currently employed women and for women that will be employed in the near future. So to my fellow women who are out there working hard, here are ten helpful tips to help you out in your career.
- Women have to be more qualified than their male counterparts if they’re competing for the same job; plain and simple that is the world we live in.
- When it comes to your career, keep your options open and keep your ideas about your career path open as well.
- “What gets measured, gets done.” That is one of Pucino’s utmost important factors, when it comes to showing how successful a person is or can be.
- In order to stay current in your field, subscribe and read the best articles and websites that are relevant to you.
- Involve yourself in the company you work for, but be picky about what organizations you join, and really invest your time.
- Do your best every day, regardless of the setbacks or circumstances.
- Don’t take a position in a company just because of the company itself. Make sure it’s what you want to do or it’s where you’d like to go.
- A lot of people that hire are looking for people who strive to progress, so try to update and improve your knowledge on the subject in which you’re working on or involved in. Also, stay up to date on what the company is doing too, by reading their newsletter.
- When things get aggressive or uncomfortable in a meeting between you and a male peer, leave the situation. Suggest to pick the topic back up at another time, and calmly remove yourself from the area.
- Many women are afraid to mention their desire to be promoted. They aren’t sure how to go about it, or when they should let their boss know. The best time to do so is during your performance review with your boss. Let him or her know that within a certain amount of time, you’d like to be in a management position.
These ten tips were just a taste of what is inside of Janet Pucino’s book. I encourage both women and men, to read it, so that you can be more informed about the nature of the executive world. Climbing the corporate ladder isn’t easy, but Not in The Club: A Woman’s Journey Through the Biased World of Business, gives much needed insight into the corporate atmosphere. Janet Pucino’s book is a must read. I can guarantee that you’ll learn something to help further your success in the future.
About Crystal D. Higgins:
Currently a freshman at NIU, Crystal is involved in various activities on campus. She is on the Passport Advisory Board for NIU’s College of Business, the secretary of Women in Business Professions, and a member of CAB (Campus Activities Board). Originally a business management major, Crystal is considering a marketing major instead, and would like to study abroad in the UK in the near future. She would love to have a career in the media/entertainment field and wants to move to NY, LA, Atlanta, Houston, or downtown Chicago in pursuit of her career. For fun, Crystal likes to travel, watch movies, learn about other cultures and traditions, and spend time with family and friends. She also avidly listens to music, and thinks it would be a really cool experience to learn how to DJ! Although she has only just begun her college career, she is optimistic for what the future entails.
Crystal can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org