The FT Weekend Magazine has just published its list of top 50 women in world business. It makes for some refreshing and inspiring reading. These women are all powerful and successful chief executives across a range of businesses, who have worked hard to achieve their positions and play by rules that may not necessarily appeal to everyone, male or female.
One in particular, however, put things into perspective for me. After leaving her hi-flying job as president of PepsiCo North America to bring up her three children, she returned to the fore seven years later and swiftly – ie, after one year – became chairman and chief executive of Sara Lee. Now if that is not inspiring in itself, it is her take on women entering the workplace and her comments about those looking to return to employment after taking ‘time out’. A misnomer in itself, it would seem.
The value women add to business can be phenomenal, and the talents they bring with them (multi-tasking being just one) should not be overlooked. To quote this woman’s exact comments about her own period out of work, “From a professional side, I feel like I went to graduate school”.
Now that has to be better than any internship on offer these days.