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The Atlantic: Why Aren’t There More Indra Nooyis?

When Nooyi announced at the age of 62 that she will step down from Pepsi this fall after a 12-year-run as its chief executive, she became the latest of several female leaders to leave companies on the S&P 500, including Campbell Soup’s Denise Morrison, Hewlett-Packard’s Meg Whitman, and Mondelez International’s Irene Rosenfeld. Women make up 44 percent of employees of S&P 500 companies; they also make up 37 percent of first-level and mid-level officials and managers, and 27 percent of executive and senior-level officials and managers. Women have gotten into entry-level positions very successfully, and then they get to middle management, and things stall out. Inclusive Viewpoint: We must find ways to attract women to the workforce, but allow them to balance having a family and taking care of aging parents, and to contribute productively to the workforce. Guard against workplace policies that reward time spent at the office and penalize time away. Also, be aware of more overt forms of bias, such as gendered assumptions about what leaders should look like.


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