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BUSINESS 2012 INSIDE YOU’LL FIND… • Abacus Tax Services ...............PG X • The Bead Shop . .......................PG X • Bisnett Insurance ....................PG X • Board Bin and Girl Street ........PG X • Burnsies ...................................PG X • Cari’s Hair Care . ......................PG X • Coldwell Banker Distinctive Properties ................................PG X

• Colortyme ................................PG X • Dr. Maria Maricich ...................PG X • Healthy Skin of Sun Valley ......PG X • Jane’s Artifacts .......................PG X • Janine Bear . ............................PG X • Kinder Welt School ..................PG X • Mortgage Solutions .................PG X • My House Furnishings .............PG X

• Property Plus Management . ...PG X • Shelley’s Deli ...........................PG X • Skinsations ..............................PG X • Stifel . .......................................PG X • Sue Radford .............................PG X • Tara Bella Flowers ...................PG X • The Pixel Bakery ......................PG X • Willow Papery ..........................PG X

The Business of America PHOTO & ARTWORK BY BALI SZABO

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wo widely reviewed recent books, The End of Men and the Rise of Women, by Hanna Rosin, and The Richer Sex: How the New Majority of Female Breadwinners Is Transforming Love, Sex and Family, by Liza Mundy, have highlighted what happens to women when men fail (they don’t discuss the growth of domestic violence). The books basically deal with the growing numerical majority of women in the workplace. Women are rising out of the ashes of men. Globalization and the decline of male-dominated industries like manufacturing, construction and finance has been coupled with the expansion of the lower-wage service sector, which prefers women. In this last (and still current?) recession, of the 7.5 million lost jobs, 75 percent were in male-dominated industries. To make matters worse, men are not adapting well. They keep waiting for the jobs to come back, sticking to old patterns of behavior, when they should be going back to school to re-qualify for the technically demanding jobs that are out there. Women are proving more adaptable to shifts in the job market and they react more positively to job changes (they move up). One observer in The Wall Street Journal remarked that “many men are engaging in a sit-down strike.” While women still lag behind in the boardroom (and on Wall Street), they’re catching up. The old either/or dilemma of Suzy homemaker/mom or career, but not both, has broken down because it was a false dichotomy; 71 percent of mothers with children under 18 are working women. Yahoo CEO Marissa Meyer took the job while she was pregnant. The few women in corporate leadership positions are the pioneers for future generations. Facebook CEO Sheryl Sandberg, for-

mer Hewlett-Packard CEO Carla Fiorina and the current Meg Whitman, CEO Denise Morrison of Campbell’s Soup, and CEO Virginia Rometty of IBM are a few of the standouts. Changing sexual and social mores have allowed many women to have both career and family. Technology has become a liberator. Laptops, teleconferencing, telecommuting, mobile, on-the-go decision-making has enabled flex time. More and more corporations are family-friendly. Daycare has grown exponentially (it’s the new extended family), as has paid leaves of absence and insurance. Author Richard Whitmire of Why Men Fail remarked that we can’t control the global economic transformations, but we can re-jigger our educational system. A recent federal study showed 38 percent of girls at the eighth-grade level were literacy proficient, as opposed to 18 percent of boys. Boys are slower to develop literacy skills and early testing makes them look bad. They see school as a place for girls, sissies and nerds. With lots of competition for their attention, the system loses them, and they are not ready for college. This can be changed. Fair enough, but it’s not all. In college in the 1960s, I chased skirts while the skirts chased grades. Women had higher grade averages and graduation rates. They paid attention, studied and got into less trouble. They were better students. Today, they’re flooding four-year, junior and community colleges. Educated, they marry later, or not at all, and they postpone having children (four in 10 women have never married—bye-bye ‘spinster’). Freed from the shackles of mandated domesticity, they’re starting businesses and flooding the workplace. Although the service sector absorbs a lot of them, they’re showing up in strength in pharmacology, medicine, law, finance, veterinary medicine, clinical psychology, and more. Women in their

Rendition of Van Gogh after Jean Francois Millet.

20s now earn more than men in their 20s. The fastest growing professions in today’s economy are female-dominated. New societal and global realities need new paradigms as gender roles dissolve. We can’t dance on the graves of men. We have to move forward together as equals. We can’t do that until we throw the arcane dominant/submissive social model into the Dumpster and embrace an upgrade—the happy, successful and empowered woman. tws

October 17, 2012  

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