Business

In a 2012 survey by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly 1 in 5 women reported being raped at some point in their lives. Many of these women work and like it or not, this affects us all and for companies specifically, it impacts their bottom line. We can no longer ignore the impact violence against women takes on the economy. For example, the recent gang-rape case in New Delhi reportedly impacted productivity in several major cities.

A recent infographic from OnlineBusinessDegree.org looks at female entrepreneurship, and specifically how such entrepreneurs are on the rise. "Just 40 years ago an woman could be denied a small business loan because of her sex," the graphic notes. But today, nearly four decades after the 1974 Equal Credit Act made such discrimination illegal, nearly 1-in-3 businesses are owned by women, and women are starting businesses at nearly twice the rate of men.

Each year, the UC Davis Graduate School of Management, in conjunction with Watermark, tallies the number of women on California company boards. The needle hasn't moved much. This year's report found that 44.8 percent (or 179) of California’s largest public companies have no women directors. Zero. Almost a third have no female board members or highest paid executives.
Seeing makeup's ill effects on actresses inspired Jane Iredale to create a new line of cosmetics. Founded in 1994, Jane Iredale Mineral Cosmetics was one of the first mineral makeup brands. That was way before people talked about parabens or BPA, or even bothered reading labels.

Conferences miss out on women speakers. Tech start-ups need female developers. Advertising juries are often all guys. There are real diversity problems, but there’s one new way to address them: the Find a Token Woman widget from the group She Says, which promotes women in digital marketing and advertising around the world.

School House is the Facebook of sweatshirts. While Facebook started at Harvard before going global, School House began at Duke and has expanded its collegiate wear to 32 different colleges, with thousands more sure to come. What’s more, this purveyor of American collegiate wear is actually Made in America. It's an ethical fashion company that produces well-designed collegiate wear, rather than sweatshirts that make you look like a potato.
For many women entrepreneurs today, the most grotesque “F-word” one can conceive of and utter is “failure.” According to top startup investor and advisor Judy Robinett, the most successful entrepreneurial ventures typically fail three times before hitting success, however many women take failure personally and abandon entrepreneurship entirely. While men typically bounce back in the face of failure, women tend to internalize failure and struggle to recover.
Women -- and men -- at all income levels report harassment, retaliation, and even outright firing by their employers once their caregiving responsibilities become known. Reported cases of family responsibility discrimination are on the rise: lawsuits filed by employees with family caregiving obligations have increased almost 400% in the past decade, while the number of reports of pregnancy discrimination rose 35 percent over the past ten years.

A new video from the European Commission looks at gender balance on corporate boards in Europe. The Commission "has proposed legislation with the aim of attaining a 40% objective of the under-represented sex in non-executive board-member positions in publicly listed companies, with the exception of small and medium enterprises. Currently...85% of non-executive board members and 91.1% of executive board members are men."

Packing your things, clearing your desk, and getting ready to stuff yourself silly for the Thanksgiving Holiday? We want you to get as much out of your holiday as possible, so before you leave the office, make sure to set up an Out of Office email. This way your colleagues and business associates will know not to expect a response and you can turn off your iPhone / Blackberry / Electronic ball-and-chain without even a twinge of guilt.

Advertising pros Janet Kestin & Nancy Vonk are the revolutionaries behind the Dove Campaign for Real Beauty. The 75 second video Dove "Evolution" of a sped-up photo shoot of a model being made-up and retouched. It's been viewed on YouTube over 15 million times. “We never thought it would change the industry,” says Vonk. Kestin adds, “It was part of a landmark campaign that will not lose its station anytime soon.”

Singers may dream of performing on American Idol or dancers may hope to appear on Dancing with the Stars. But women tech entrepreneurs have their own star-making vehicle: PITCH, Women 2.0’s startup competition. The event took place this week in New York City in a darkened old theater. Ten women-led tech companies competed for three prizes; they had to sell the panelists their business idea.

A new video presented by LinkedIn and Citi as part of their Get Connected series features Cheryl Kellond, the founder and CEO of athletic technology company Bia Sport, which Kellond describes as "the first iconic fitness brand built around data and women." In the three-and-half-minute video, Kellond talks about how she transitioned from being a single mother making $20,000 a year to being a businesswoman and founding her own successful company.

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