Study: Old Boy Network: Gender Differences in the Impact of Social Networks on Remuneration in Top Executive Jobs (Marie Lalanne and Paul Seabright, Toulouse School of Economics, 2011)
Finding: Increasing your paycheck may be as simple as expanding your network.
Note about The Woman Effect Research Index: This study was performed by researchers not affiliated with InPower Women. Our Research Index includes all relevant research to the subject of women, business and power. We do not influence how the research was conducted or reported by the researchers. In our abstracts, we focus on pulling out the most actionable advice for individual women. To suggest additional research we should index, or discuss our choice of abstract focus, please contact us
InPower Insight: Build your network to close the pay gap – for yourself and others in your network.
Best news ever! A new study shows that all that stuff about professional women taking time out in thier career to tend to thier family, being too nice and other stories we tell ourselves about why men are still paid more than women in the leadership and executive ranks may be a very small part of the story – or just plain wrong. And, it turns out there’s a lot we can do to using the study’s insights to close the gap, and it’s what many women enjoy doing – networking!
As published in the Economist in 2011 Marie Lalanne and Paul Seabright have measured the effect of business network’s size on remuneration using a database of board members in Europe and America. As you might expect they found that the size of an executive’s network – for example between 200 members or 400 – can have a 6% impact on their salary. For non-executives the gap is even bigger at 14%.
The study’s authors believe that the different way women and men build and use their networks is so compelling that it could be the primary explanation for the equal pay gap – all by itself! They note that women tend to build fewer, deeper connections while men’s broader networks – including weaker connections to more people – pay off for them (literally) when they keep a higher profile in front of this larger audience.
Of course there are other factors at play, but this finding has strong and positive implications for women we can leverage today, using tools like LinkedIn that make it easier than ever to expand your network.
Career Coaching Tip: Set your intention to grow your network in small but consistent steps over the next year. How many are in your network today? How often do you touch most of them (via email, in person meeting, social occasions, conferences etc.?) Set a new target for the number of connections you have and how frequently and meaningfully you touch them. Don’t try to boil the ocean, but set up some goals and practices you can keep going throughout the year. Can you add two people to your network every month? Five? Set a target and go! Start right now by joining the InPower Women’s LinkedIn Community!
Category: Career Advancement
Keywords: equal pay, career advancement, business networking, research, women in leadership, career coaching, professional women
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