Think about a family member, friend, neighbor or colleague who recently lost his or her job. Then ask yourself: Would that person still be employed at their former company if that company had more women running the show?
Given the recent debate about women in high-powered jobs, and with unemployment stuck above eight percent, it's not a frivolous question. And we're starting to edge toward an answer. In 2006, Norway imposed a quota system for boards of directors of public companies. Within two years, the law stated, at least 40% of directors had to be women, and at least 40% had be men. (So far, under-representation of men has not been a problem.) Ever since those thresholds were reached, researchers have been digging in, trying to figure out if more women in high places makes any difference.
One of their more recent findings: It does make a difference. Specifically? Fewer layoffs.
Nothing kills a pleasant vacation buzz like 1,042 emails waiting in your inbox.
That's why, after my last vacation, I declared email bankruptcy. Translation: I deleted everything.
My first encounter with email bankruptcy was inadvertent. I only discovered that a former colleague had deleted all the email that came in during his vacation because his boss told me I had better send him another one. It seemed sort of sneaky at the time.
But now that Lauren Young, a journalist and editor with Thomson Reuters (and another former colleague), has coined a catchy term for getting rid of all those messages, so-called email bankruptcy is out in the open. Respectable, even. “There’s something so liberating about going into your inbox and deleting it all,” says Young.
The famously rude French have decided that there is such a thing as too much rudeness.
Last month the Paris metro system, RATP, launched a publicity campaign against incivility. Posters of French transit riders, depicted as animals including hens and sloths, now grace metro stations and buses, urging passengers not to push, shove, litter, talk on the phone or be rude to the transit staff. "One bonjour doesn't cost a penny, and it changes your day," says one poster. Another: "If you shove five people getting onboard, it won't make us set off faster."
"These types of bad behavior have always existed," Julien Damon, a sociologist who helped carry out a RATP survey about what people found most annoying about Parisians, told the U.K.’s Daily Mail. “But what has changed is that we are less prepared to tolerate them.”
The French aren’t the only ones fed up with rudeness. In Howard County, Maryland, the library system launched a campaign called “Choose Civility” to counter bad manners, says Cheri Meiners, author of the children’s book Be Polite and Kind. “My feeling is that society is finding it necessary to teach morality because our society has changed with respect to family life and religion, which held more influence in previous times to teach concepts of civility and kindness,” said Meiners, who lives in Howard County.
It used to be that when you saw a person walking down the street, talking to themselves and gesturing with their hands, you’d give them a wide berth because you’d assume they were a little crazy.
Nowadays, you probably just think they’ve got their earbuds in and are talking on a cell phone.
But maybe they are a little off. Maybe they’re overdosing on technology -- and blue light.
Wow. That was fast.
We heard the first Marissa Mayer “joke” less than 24 hours after she’d been appointed CEO of Yahoo, and had also announced she was pregnant with her first child.
Yahoo’s earnings announcement was to coincide with Mayer’s first day on the job. She wasn’t going to be on the earnings call with financial analysts, the company said, because she needed time to get up to speed on the business. Fair enough. But when a young CEO of a Silicon Valley startup heard she was skipping the call, this was his response: "Oh, it must be ultrasound day."
This is what we’re up against.