Causes of the Business Leadership Gender Gap Are Different According to Men and Women


Ask a group of business men why there is a gender gap in business leadership and you’ll get a very different answer than you will if you ask the same question to a group of business women. However, the differences might surprise you.

Avivah Wittenberg-Cox shares an enlightening story on the Harvard Business Review to demonstrate the disparity in thinking between men and women:

“We think that the top three obstacles to better gender balance are: Management mindset, leadership criteria, and career management processes ” concluded the group of men during last week’s leadership team meeting, after an animated debate.

Then I asked the much smaller group of women who had been enthusiastically discussing the topic in a corner of the room to present their analysis. “Self-criticism, lack of confidence and self-selection out of promotion pools” was how they explained the dearth of women in the room — and on this team.

“I am totally turned around,” the VP who headed up the division later admitted to me. “I never would have believed such a difference in analysis if I hadn’t just witnessed it. The men blamed the system, the women are blaming themselves!”

Surprised? Follow the link to read Avivah’s complete article. It’s a must-read that’s filled with fantastic insights!

Get the details: Stop Asking Women Why They Haven’t Gotten Ahead via


Susan Gunelius

Susan Gunelius is the Founder and Editor-in-Chief of Women on Business. She is a 20-year veteran of the marketing field and has authored ten books about marketing, branding, and social media, including the highly popular 30-Minute Social Media Marketing, Content Marketing for Dummies, Blogging All-in-One for Dummies and Kick-ass Copywriting in 10 Easy Steps. Susan’s marketing-related content can be found on,,,, and more. Susan is President & CEO of KeySplash Creative, Inc., a marketing communications company. She has worked in corporate marketing roles and through client relationships with AT&T, HSBC, Citibank, Intuit, The New York Times, Cox Communications, and many more large and small companies around the world. Susan also speaks about marketing, branding and social media at events around the world and is frequently interviewed by television, online, radio, and print media organizations about these topics. She holds an MBA in Management and Strategy and a Bachelor of Science degree in Marketing.

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