Drops from the Fire Hose – November 13, 2012

The global gender agenda — McKinsey Quarterly

Early-tenure women want to move to the next level as much as men do. Yet we found that only 18 percent of entry- and midlevel women have a long-term eye on the C suite, against 36 percent of men. That finding reinforces our belief that inspirational leaders should intervene with talented female middle managers to discuss their aspirations, build their confidence, embolden them to aim higher, and seek ways to make line roles more palatable for them. In particular, we would emphasize the need for women’s leadership-development programs to focus on personal mastery of thoughts, feelings, and actions and thus to make women accountable for their own future.5 In the average Fortune 500 company, a 10 percent boost in the odds that women will advance from manager to director and then to vice president would yield an additional 90 female executives, including five senior vice presidents and one member of the executive committee.

Just a Little Meditation Causes Brain-Wave Changes — The Daily Stat

After just 5 weeks of daily 5-to-16-minute training sessions in focused-attention meditation (“Relax with your eyes closed, and focus on the flow of your breath…”), research subjects showed strong brain-wave changes associated with positive emotions, says a team led by Christopher A. Moyer of the University of Wisconsin. The findings suggest that the benefits of meditation may be more accessible than was previously believed, the researchers say.

A More Effective Board of Directors — Harvard Business Review

To add such strategic value, high-performing boards must be “talent-centric.” At its most basic level, this manifests itself in a board’s composition and diversity level. An enterprise must attract directors who can provide valuable, strategic input, while building a board that can draw on the diversity of its members’ expertise and backgrounds — across geographies, gender, race, and experience — to create a whole that’s literally greater than the sum of its parts.

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