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Eve on Top

Book Description

Eve on Top takes an in-depth look at the position of women in senior positions in the public sector using a case-study approach, based on ten ‘successful’ women and their background, upbringing, career progression, successes and failures, challenges and experiences. Each case study includes a ‘lessons learned’ response in the form of advice both to other women, and the organisations in which they work. Surrounding and supporting the case studies are short essays charting the main themes that emerge from the interview process, backed up by extensive literature reviews. The book also compares relevant public sectors in different parts of the world and concludes with several case studies.

  • Summarises the commonality and the diversity of the challenges and issues
  • Provides an analysis of the factors that help and hinder women in reaching the top positions
  • Provides solutions suggested by detailed analysis of real-life experiences

Table of Contents

  1. Cover image
  2. Title page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Copyright
  5. Foreword
  6. Preface
  7. Acknowledgements
  8. List of abbreviations
  9. Editorial conventions and confidentiality
  10. About the authors
  11. Chapter 1: Women at the top (or not): history, background, issues and themes
    1. Introduction
    2. Progress in context: two steps forward, one back?
    3. Ceilings, walls and floors: the continuation of disadvantage?
    4. Family matters
    5. Success
    6. Strategies for success and ‘performing masculinity’
    7. Conclusion
  12. Chapter 2: Methodology: an explanation and a critique
    1. Introduction
    2. Quantity or quality?
    3. The interview format – some issues
    4. The sample
    5. Confidentiality and anonymity – from case studies to case interviews
    6. Doing the interviews – initial steps and revisions
    7. Conclusion
  13. Chapter 3: Characteristics of the women in the study
    1. Introduction
    2. Social profile
    3. Personal characteristics – how did these women see themselves?
    4. Ambition, motivation and determination to succeed
    5. Energy, hard work, perfectionism
    6. Rebels with a cause
    7. Confidence
    8. Communication, empathy, the ‘softer’ side
    9. Balance and perspective – ‘it’s only a job’
    10. Nature versus nurture
    11. Conclusion
  14. Chapter 4: Exploring and experiencing ‘success’
    1. Introduction
    2. Rationale
    3. Defining our terms
    4. Questions for discussion
    5. The participants’ views of success
    6. Self-deprecation and external recognition
    7. The broader debate
    8. Confidence
    9. Conclusion
  15. Chapter 5: Career progression and planning
    1. Introduction
    2. ‘It just happened’
    3. Planned and not planned
    4. Changing targets
    5. Turning points
    6. Taking risks and being determined
    7. Getting promoted
    8. Stepping off the ladder
    9. Future plans
    10. Conclusion
  16. Chapter 6: Mentoring, role models and networking
    1. Introduction
    2. The importance of good mentoring and role models
    3. Individuals
    4. Men as mentors and role models
    5. Support and role of family
    6. The women themselves as mentors and role models
    7. The importance of networking
    8. Types of network and network make-up
    9. Conclusion
  17. Chapter 7: Gender
    1. Introduction
    2. Difference and differentiation
    3. Gendered perspectives
    4. Being a woman: help or hindrance?
    5. Conclusion
  18. Chapter 8: Barriers and obstacles
    1. Introduction
    2. Types of barrier and obstacle
    3. Obstacles based on discrimination
    4. A work culture of masculinity
    5. Self-imposed barriers
    6. Women as barriers to other women
    7. Snobbery
    8. No obvious barriers
    9. Perceptions
    10. Conclusion
  19. Chapter 9: The ‘glass ceiling’
    1. Introduction
    2. Evidence for a ‘glass ceiling’
    3. No personal experience
    4. Not deserving of promotion?
    5. Continued unequal treatment
    6. The next generation
    7. Conclusion
  20. Chapter 10: Sacrifices, gains, balances and choices
    1. Introduction
    2. Sacrifices
    3. Gains
    4. Choices
    5. Conclusion
  21. Chapter 11: Domestic considerations
    1. Introduction
    2. Women as carers
    3. Improved conditions
    4. Tempted to stay at home
    5. Being there – or not
    6. Supportive partners
    7. Conclusion
  22. Chapter 12: Working harder?
    1. Introduction
    2. All in the mind
    3. Definitely not
    4. Working harder professionally and personally
    5. Being driven
    6. Being modest
    7. Working smarter
    8. No difference at the top
    9. Conclusion
  23. Chapter 13: Leadership and management styles
    1. Introduction
    2. Differences in style
    3. Areas of difference between male and female leaders
    4. The emergence of a female leadership style
    5. Particular traits of leadership
    6. Leadership characteristics: the individual
    7. Conclusion
  24. Chapter 14: Advice to men
    1. Introduction
    2. Listening, learning and being there more
    3. Awareness of power
    4. Behaviour and treatment
    5. Team working, ego, changing approaches
    6. Using talent and networking
    7. Demography
    8. The future
    9. Conclusion
  25. Chapter 15: Advice to women
    1. Introduction
    2. Context
    3. Being yourself – with confidence
    4. Mentors and role models
    5. Taking risks and making mistakes
    6. Women at the top – the broader picture
    7. Conclusion
  26. Chapter 16: Summary and conclusion
    1. Introduction
    2. Successful women
    3. Key drivers of success
    4. Career progression
    5. Mentoring, role models, networking
    6. Gender
    7. Barriers and obstacles
    8. The ‘glass ceiling’
    9. Sacrifices, gains, choices and balances
    10. Domestic considerations
    11. Working harder?
    12. Leadership and management styles
    13. Advice to men and women
    14. Concluding remarks
  27. Appendix: Interview checklist
  28. Index