Women have a leg up on men during this economic downturn, said Philip Delves Broughton in the London Evening Standard. Although women make up 50 percent of the U.S. workforce, they’ve accounted for only 20 percent of layoffs this year. One explanation is that hard-hit sectors, such as construction, manufacturing, and finance, are dominated by men. Ironically, the fact that women have long been “shamefully underpaid” compared with men may now turn out to be preserving their jobs. “When the cost-cutters go over the compensation figures, women look like a bargain.”
There’s more to the phenomenon than that, said Anne Fisher in Fortune. “In this job market, standing out from the crowd requires a ‘personal brand’—a clear professional identity that highlights a candidate’s unique set of strengths and skill—and that’s one area where women may excel.” Women’s management styles also tend to be more collaborative, according to Catherine Kaputa, author of The Female Brand: Using the Female Mindset to Succeed in Business. This talent for teamwork has not only helped spare women from layoffs, she argues. It should also prove useful when it comes to holding things together during tough economic times.
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