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The best way to eliminate the gender pay gap? Ban salary negotiations. After losing a gender discrimination lawsuit against her former employer, Ellen Pao banned salary negotiation at Reddit. (Reuters/Robert Galbraith) Ellen Pao, interim chief executive of Reddit, announced last month a ban on salary negotiations at the social media company.

Her stated goal: to eliminate the persistent disadvantage that women have at the bargaining table. Her pronouncement came just days after Pao lost a high-profile sex-discrimination lawsuit against one of Silicon Valley’s biggest venture-capital firms. Since then, she has insisted that companies “can’t just hide” from sexism in their workplaces and must be proactive in counteracting discrimination. Why take away an important tool for women to achieve equal pay? In a perfect world, I would agree. At bargaining tables, women’s biggest obstacle isn’t that they can’t learn to be “more like men.” If women aren’t seen as tough enough at negotiating, why not just train them to “man up”?

Sadly, Sandberg isn’t wrong. Maternity Leave: U.S. Policies Still Fail Workers. One week into her new job, Letitia Camire learned she was pregnant. It was 2011, and she’d just been hired as the office manager for United Tool & Machine, a small, family-owned tool and die company outside Boston. Her salary was $30,000 a year. Camire clicked with her co-workers immediately. Her boss, the owner and president, started asking her about long-term career goals. “They seemed so family-oriented,” says Camire, now 32. So when her morning sickness became noticeable (“I just sat at my desk looking like death warmed over”), she felt she owed her new work family an explanation.

“His face immediately changed,” she says. Camire soon found herself in the awkward position of interviewing for jobs while pregnant. Photographer: Steven Brahms for Bloomberg BusinessweekBehind this week’s cover. Her story isn’t unusual. This comes as a shock to a lot of young women. The U.S. is also way behind the 78 countries that also offer leave to fathers. So why is the Family Act at a standstill? Sex bias: Still in business. “Sex discrimination may have been a problem in the past, but if you look at the number of women we promoted last year, you’ll see that now only qualifications matter.”

“Things are really changing . . . Why, five years ago there weren’t any female managers in the whole firm . . . and besides, the kind of discussion we’re having would be unheard of.” “The men in our company are aware of women’s demands and are sympathetic to them.” “Women’s Lib has served its purpose of making us aware of a problem, but it’s not needed anymore.” Such remarks typify the response of many senior executives today to the issue of equal opportunity for women in business. They reflect a prevailing complacency—a sense that the problem, now that it is generally acknowledged and discussed, can be trusted to solve itself. The extensive publicity generated by the United Nations’ International Women’s Year seems to have made an impression on businessmen in Canada as elsewhere.

Who is correct? The myth of progress l. 2. 3. Office Politics: A Skill Women Should Lean Into - Kathryn Heath. By Kathryn Heath | 10:00 AM February 25, 2014 Who says women don’t like office politics? Just about everyone: My clients. My colleagues. My mother. The sommelier at the French restaurant I ate lunch at last weekend. They’ve all complained about office politics. Need more evidence? But, as Winston Churchill once said, when you mix people and power, you get politics. With that in mind, we put together a prescriptive model suggesting several ways women can improve their political performance, which we’ve used with success in recent coaching seminars. Plug In: Today’s nonstop pace causes some of us to go it alone—working through the week’s agenda simply to stay afloat.

Look Out: Imagine your career two to three moves ahead of where you are now and keep that image in your mind. Line Up: In order to make office politics more palatable, we coach women to build their careers as if they were running for office. Take Credit: Don’t be afraid to be noticed. Empowering Women And Girls, One Hashtag At A Time. Why Women Don’t Negotiate Their Job Offers - Hannah Riley Bowles. By Hannah Riley Bowles | 2:00 PM June 19, 2014 Research shows that women are more reticent than men to negotiate their salary offers. For instance, one study of graduating MBA students found that half of the men had negotiated their job offers as compared to only one eighth of the women. This general pattern has been replicated in survey studies of working adults and in laboratory experiments.

It begs the question: Why? Is this a “confidence” problem? Is negotiation a skill for which men are simply better socialized than women? Why leave money on the table? Researchers have examined the why, and the answer has more to do with how women are treated when they negotiate than it has to do with their general confidence or skills at negotiation. In repeated studies, the social cost of negotiating for higher pay has been found to be greater for women than it is for men. But here’s a twist: we love it when women negotiate assertively for others. OK. Focus On: Negotiating.