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The WATT® Report



Welcome - February, 2011

Welcome to The WATT® Report, your resource for news and advice to help you get ahead. As a member of the Women at the Top® Network, you'll receive this monthly e-newsletter the first Wednesday of every month.
 
In Case You Missed It 

Each month we'll round up a few of the most interesting reads we've found to help you stay informed. This month's picks are: 
 
Fact: A majority of unsponsored women (70%) resist confronting their boss about a raise, according to a new study issued by the Center for Work-Life Policy, The Sponsor Effect: Breaking Through the Last Glass Ceiling.  With a sponsor in their corner, 38% of women summoned the courage to negotiate. (Read More)
 
Study: A recent study titled, The Career Cost of Family, written by two Harvard economics professors, found that among highly educated women who take time off from their careers to raise their children, women with M.B.A.'s suffer the largest income penalty.  Specifically, the study found that female M.B.A.'s who have taken off 18 months from their career to raise children were left earning  41 percent less on average than male M.B.A.'s.
 
The study also noted that the career costs of family vary greatly across the high-end occupations studied, with some sectors, most notably those in the corporate and financial areas, lagging in terms of the family cost of career. (Read More
 
Quote: "I can say in the two years I've been attending Davos [World Economic Forum held in Davos, Switzerland], I will have conducted 72 interviews combined. Not one of them was with a woman, and it wasn't for lack of trying." - Liz Claman, Fox Business Network Anchor
 
 
How to Find a Sponsor to Help Skyrocket Your Career
 
Are you over-mentored and under-sponsored? If you think that you can never have too many mentors,  think again.
 
In a Harvard Business Review article published in September 2010, the authors took a new look at why women don't move ahead as rapidly or as far as men do.
 
They found that women actually have slightly more mentoring experiences than equally qualified men do. So what gives? Well they found that the big difference is that women often have mentors that are lower on the leadership hierarchy.
 
Consider Karen, one of my mentees through a formal mentoring program I participate in. Considered a high potential employee targeted for retention, Karen was suddenly on everyone's radar screen. She was asked and expected to participate in three separate mentoring programs, an outside program (working with me), her division program and a corporate program. 
 
Karen's issue? There were numerous conflicts between the programs, there were concerns about the amount of time necessary to complete each program and more importantly, there were some internal political challenges as well.  Which program did Karen want to participate in? The Corporate program because she felt it afforded her the most visibility, yet she felt obligated to participate in all three.
 
Here's something to consider. If your mentor doesn't also serve as a sponsor, then you're not going to get the assistance and the protection that is often provided as you continue to move up the leadership hierarchy to obtain top positions.
 
To move ahead in your organization in the most expeditious way possible, find yourself a sponsor who meets the following criteria:*  
  • Is a senior manager with influence
  • Gives you exposure to other executives who may help your career
  • Makes sure you are considered for promising opportunities and challenging assignments
  • Protects you from negative publicity or damaging contact with senior executives 
  • Fights to get you promoted
*Source: HBR, Sept. 2010, Why Men Still Get More Promotions than Women.
 
Keep in mind that mentors can and should continue to play a role in your career development as well.  Continue those relationships only with mentors that provide you the feedback and advice you need to continue to develop both your confidence and competence. Remember, it's not quantity it's quality!
 
Have a tip that helped you be more successful as a leader? Please share your ideas with us at or visit the WATT® Blog, www.theWATTblog.com
 
 
This Month
 
Dial up Your LeadershipTM with these WATT® programs and events.
 
February/March:
February 28 - March 4th
Women at the Top® Virtual Leadership Conference: Re-Energize Your Career! Get the tools and inspiration you need to help re-energize YOUR career! Join us for the second annual Women at the Top® Virtual Leadership Conference: Re-Energize Your Career! The conference features 21 leadership experts in five core development areas presented over the course of five days. Registration is FR*EE. (Learn More)
 
Feedback
 
We welcome your feedback! Share your comments:  and visit our blog at www.theWATTblog.com.
 

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