Maternal Wall Bias
Mothers are 79% less likely to be hired, only half as likely to be promoted, offered an average of $11,000 less in salary and held to higher performance and punctuality standards than an identical woman without children.
By Joan C. Williams (Author, The New Girls’ Network)
Advice literature for women is a crowded field and a predictable one. Most advice falls into one of two woefully inadequate camps:
1. Man up! The most common advice assumes that the problem is that women need to act more like men. Men tend to negotiate harder, act with more confidence and go after plum assignments that will require them to stretch and swagger. All this is good advice – sometimes, for some women. It will work for you if you tend to act in traditionally feminine ways: modest, happy to play support roles and attuned to the comfort of others
“People expect mothers to be less committed and therefore give them less responsibility and pay them less from the start.”
By Joan C. Williams & Rachel Dempsey (Authors, The New Girls’ Network)
An article in this weekend’s New York Times shed some more light on Silicon Valley’s worst-kept secret: it has a woman problem. Its look at female founders of tech start-ups who also have children shows a remarkable lack of self-consciousness about Maternal Wall bias, the strongest and most open form of gender bias today.
According to the article, women make up 10% of founders at high-growth tech companies, and raise 70% less capital than men do. There are a lot of reasons for this; we discussed sexual harassment in our last post, and we’ll take on the meritocracy myth