Opinion: Why Wall Street’s discrimination against women has no future – Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

From Market Watch

We are well-accustomed by now to the ways in which women are mistreated and discriminated against on Wall Street.

Over the past decade, nearly every major bank — from Goldman Sachs GS to Morgan Stanley MS, Citigroup C— has settled a sex discrimination suit. News reports have exposed in lurid detail just how badly women are underpaid; the degree to which they face hostility from their male peers; and how they are subjected to a demeaning environment and made to feel inferior.

The latest gender bias suit, filed by Megan Messina, a senior fixed-income banker, is against Bank of America. The suit accuses BofA of vastly underpaying her and other women. In addition, Messina said her boss made her feel unwelcome in his “’bro’s club’,” and subjected her to questions like, “Have your eyes always been that blue?” The suit also accuses the bank of misconduct, and describes alleged instances of front-running trades and withholding information from clients.

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Getting away from the cult of motherhood: Why paternity leave is so important — Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

From WBUR Cognoscenti

Sports radio isn’t a typical venue for impassioned debate on work-family issues and employment policy. But recently when Daniel Murphy took three days off from his job as second baseman for the New York Mets to be with his wife as she delivered their newborn son, it became just that. Two WFAN broadcasters — Mike Francesa and Boomer Esiason — took to the airwaves to rebuke Murphy’s absence.

“Quite frankly, I would have said [to my wife that she should have a] C-section before the season starts,” Esiason said. (For the record: Major League Baseball has had a three-day paternity leave policy since 2011.) Thankfully, all that machismo subsided when fans and athletes came to Murphy’s defense.

“You know, the man had his first child. He’s allowed to be there. The rules state that he can be there, so he went,” said Terry Collins, the Mets manager.

Bravo to Murphy for exercising his employee right to take paternity leave. Well done to Collins, his boss, for encouraging him to do so. These are welcome developments, particularly in such a male-dominated arena, like sports.

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For women to thrive, men should lean out — Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Professor Emerita Lotte Bailyn

From USA Today

Earlier this year, McKinsey & Co. published a survey of 1,400 managers revealing that female executives are just as ambitious as men. The survey found that79% of all mid- or senior-level women say they “have the desire to reach a top-management position,” similar to 81% of men.

The press went wild. “Career Drive Equal for Men and Women,” said the Business News Dailyheadline. “Study finds executive women are just as, if not more, ambitious than men,” said The Washington Post. The newspaper quotes a breathless McKinsey executive saying she was “so flabbergasted” by the finding. This isn’t news. It has been shown before and mirrors my experience teaching at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

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Unlimited vacation time is better in theory than in practice — Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Prof. Emerita Lotte Bailyn

MIT Sloan Prof. Emerita Lotte Bailyn

From The Atlantic “Quartz”

It is a vivid illustration of our 24/7-work culture that most Americans do not use all of their allotted vacation days. This is especially sad considering the large number of Americans who are not eligible for paid time-off; the US is one of a few countries that lacks a federal law requiring vacation time. Even those employees who do take time off from work are still largely tethered to the office.

Numerous studies have found that time away from the office and more frequent vacations lead to greater productivity, improved job performance, and lower levels of stress. Time off from work gives us an opportunity to rest and recharge, which in turn makes us more creative and resourceful once we’re back on the job. Most of us already know this from personal experience but now there’s data to back it up (paywall).