Women continue to earn less than men - The Explorer: Women In Business

Women continue to earn less than men

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Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 4:00 am

Women have made huge strides over the last decade when it comes to workplace contributions. However, despite all the successes, women in business will still say they fall short when it comes to pay, and in some cases, respect.

Pay

When it comes to pay, this is still one of the biggest concerns for women today. Many women are doing the same work as their male counterparts, but find themselves being paid a lot less.

According to BizWomen.com, a recent study showed that nationally, women make 77 cents for every $1 a man makes.

Equal Pay Day was created in April of 1996 by the National Committee on Pay Equity to draw attention to the inequality in pay between men and women in the United States.

Equal Pay Day officially falls on a Tuesday in April each year.

In terms of annual pay, it took women from January 1, 2007 until April 2008 to make as much money as their male colleagues had made by December 31, 2007.

In terms of weekly pay, women have to work until the following Tuesday to catch up to the earnings of men in equivalent positions.

According to statistics provided by the American Association of the University of Women, a typical college-educated woman 25 years and older working full time earns $50,000 a year on the national average, while her male counterpart makes an annual salary of $70,000.

In Arizona, the average college-educated woman 25 years and older makes an average of $48,000 a year. The college-educated man makes $66,000.

The reason for the pay discrepancies continue to be debated, but a clear answer has yet to be found. Some say is just plain discrimination whether its on purpose, or not.

Issues and Challenges

While historically, men have dominated the workplace, women are coming on strong with more CEOs, business owners and leaders stepping into the arena. Each year, we have more and more women appearing in the Fortune 500 CEOs listings, we have had a woman Speaker of the House under President George W. Bush, and under President Barrack Obama.

In Tucson, the University of Arizona just recently hired its first ever female president.

Despite these accomplishments, however, there is still a shortfall of women in top leadership positions.

Though women are attending college and graduate schools in record numbers, women still make up only about 15 percent of the officer level positions in the largest global companies, are a mere 7 percent of the top wage earners, hold only about 2.5 percent of the CEO positions and, on average, make only 73 percent of what men do.

So, why are women still such a small proportion of the powerful, high-paying job positions?

A common answer is women are stepping into a man’s world. Ultimately, it is men who have made up the organizational culture, and the cold reality of the situation is that women are entering a man’s domain.

For women to continue to succeed, experts say they just have to continue working at it. They have to stay in school, get the leadership roles in companies and fight to create the balance that still isn’t there despite the decades of progress.

However, even after a woman steps into a leadership position, it doesn’t mean they will be accepted with open arms.

In a study conducted by the David Eccles School of Business, a male and female research team found that investors are less likely to back an Initial Public Offering (IPO) from a company led by a woman than a company led by a male.

Evidence of Gender Bias in IPO Prospectus Evaluators, the report authors concluded that the “lack of female-led IPOs suggests a potentially larger problem — a gender-based capital gap for new ventures.”

The team conducting the study said, “Despite identical personal qualifications and firm financials, female founders/CEOs were perceived as less capable than their male counterparts, and IPOs led by female founders/CEOs were considered less attractive. Like the glass ceiling of corporate America that has limited the advancement of female managers, female entrepreneurs face a ‘green ceiling’ when it comes to financing. Taken as a whole, our results suggest that gender stereotypes are alive and well and moreover, that such stereotypes impact investment decisions.”

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