September 25th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Career Advancement: Why it’s Worth Taking Risks

iStock_000010491842XSmallBy Nneka Orji

“Only those who risk going too far can possibly find out how far they can go.”  T.S. Eliot

We seem to be encouraged to take risks in many aspects of life in the hope or expectation of reaping greater rewards; from high-risk, high-return financial investments to extreme sports for “the thrill”. In our careers, we are also challenged with taking risks to increase the likelihood of successful career progression. Playing it safe, we’re told, will not differentiate us from our peers.

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September 24th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Are You Making Rookie Mistakes in Job Interviews?

Guest Contribution by Devika Arora

jobsearchToday’s woman is ambitious and hungry for individuality. She is eager to live her dreams, for which she wishes to become financially independent by earning her own bread and butter. This is why an increasing number of women are finding themselves back on the job hunt. But what happens when the same women sit for an interview and are questioned about their capabilities? Why is it hard for them to nail a job interview that should have been a walk in the park? The following article will highlight the 10 of the most common mistakes that women tend to make during job interviews.

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September 23rd, 2014 | 6:00 am

It’s Not You – It’s Them: What To Do When You Feel Undervalued at Work

iStock_000016936230XSmallBy Cathie Ericson

The boss doesn’t appreciate what I do. I am not getting paid enough. I am twice as smart as John, and he is getting better assignments.

Any of these thoughts ever go through your head? Undoubtedly, because according to the American Psychological Association, almost half of employees feel undervalued at work.

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September 22nd, 2014 | 6:00 am

Voice of Experience: Kelly Williams, President of Private Markets, GCM Grosvenor

By Michelle Hendelman

kelly_williamsThe pivotal moment of Kelly Williams’ career came when she was given the opportunity to step outside of her comfort zone and go in a completely new direction. “I started as a project finance lawyer in the private sector, where I was one of few women,” said Williams, who later took a position working in-house with Prudential Financial.

“Then I had the chance to move over to the business side because someone believed in me and recognized that I had the skills and ability to thrive in this new role in a different environment than what I was used to,” Williams continued.

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September 19th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Woman CFO Leads in Compensation Ranking – Signal or Noise?

By Beth Senko

iStock_000015442897XSmallA number of articles recently touted the news that for the first time, the highest paid CFO in the country was a woman.

In its fourth annual survey of CFO total compensation, The Wall Street Journal/S&P Capital IQ study placed, not one, but two women in the top 10. The study measures who got paid the most including salary, bonuses, stock awards, option awards and other compensation. Oracle’s Safra Catz topped the list of highest paid CFOs of both men and women in 2013 with total compensation of $43.6 million. Former Accenture CFO Pamela Craig placed 8th with total compensation of $12.8 million. Craig retired in August 2013.Two other women made it to the top 20. Kinder Morgan’s Kimberly Allen Dang earned $10.4 million in 2013 while Morgan Stanley’s Ruth Porat took home $10.1 million.

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September 18th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Movers and Shakers: Esther Yang, Vice President and Senior Trader-Derivatives at Voya Investment Management, formerly ING U.S. Investment Management

By Beth Senko

EY smallIn a recent round-table of derivative portfolio managers of the largest insurance companies, Esther Yang found herself being the only female among this male dominated profession. How did she get to where she is now?

Esther Yang did not have a conventional route to success in financial services. In fact, she didn’t begin college or her career with intentions of entering the field at all. However, Yang used her instincts and willingness to try new things to guide her into the position she currently holds.

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September 17th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Women as Leaders: What Is Different about Leading Other Women?

Guest Contribution by Anne Litwin, PhD

Two female friends talking.“I worked for a woman who was more task focused, which made it real uncomfortable for me. When a guy does that [is task focused], it doesn’t bother me as much.” (Financial Services Manager)

I heard this kind of statement often from the women in my research on women’s relationships in the workplace. This research, involving women from many professions and countries, shows that many women have different expectations of how female leaders should behave. Women also often report preferring to work for men, which could be a significant problem for our careers if almost half of the workforce does not want to be led by us.

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September 16th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Ethics at Work: Are Women Generally More Ethical than Men in the Workplace?

iStock_000006954519XSmallBy Louise Ogunseitan

With ethics and codes of conduct being so pivotal to the internal success of companies, industries and consumer based trust – a heavy onus is on organisations to foster a culture that nurtures and promotes adherence to them irrespective of gender. However, there has been many articles written about one gender being more ethical than the other; women over men.

A recent conversation between Shakar Vendatam and David Greene on NPR suggests that men tend to ‘have more lenient ethical standards than women’ and The Guardian goes further to explore the constructs that encourage men to bend the rules more frequently.

We have to wonder; do we run the risk of giving free license for our male counterparts to blame unethical behaviors on their gender? Likewise do we give women leverage to operate from a moral high ground as the ethical ‘light-bearers’ of society which inadvertently extends to the workplace?

The Glass Hammer explored this topic in 2013 when we looked at research out of University of California, Berkeley by Jessica A. Kennedy and Laura J. Kray which looks at how when women perceive a departure from a code of conduct, they are less likely to want to be part of it.

Why this matters for you as a leader?
In today’s current economic climate where consumer trust is at a low, establishing a code of conduct or ethical standards within an organisation couldn’t be more important for three main reasons.

• It provides a unified and universal standard on what is considered right and wrong behaviours for an organisation.
• It builds trust among colleagues within organisation.
• It promotes trust from the consumer base.

The Gender Issue
So workplace ethics are a big deal. Yet research is suggesting that men do not regard them as highly as women. Not only has research found that women are less willing to compromise ethical standards for career success, but that they are also more likely to believe that corporate ethical codes would make a positive difference. Last year, a research team at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School released a study where men and women were provided a series of fictitious job descriptions which they had to evaluate. Each job description included an ethics component and the outcome showed that women are less willing to sacrifice ethical values for money and social status and that women associate business with immorality more strongly. Could this be one of the reasons why globally, women still make up only approximately 9% of corporate board memberships?

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September 15th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Voice of Experience: Carin Pai, Executive Vice President, Fiduciary Trust

:ÌpBy Michelle Hendelman

When Carin Pai joined Fiduciary Trust 18 years ago in an associate- level position within the Investment department, she knew that she was an analytical person who had a strong creative side as well. These skills, along with a strong work ethic and circle of mentors have set a strong foundation for Pai’s rewarding career.

“I studied architecture at Brooklyn Technical High School and loved the combination of the artistic and technical elements,” explained Pai, who said she enjoys this same balance in her current role as executive vice president and director of equity management.

A Committed Leader
Throughout her career Ms. Pai has remained committed to broadening her investment management and leadership skills: in 2006 she became a Chartered Financial Analyst and then in 2011 she attended Harvard Business School’s Executive Education in Investment Management program.

Leading and managing her team of portfolio managers is one of the most rewarding aspects of her job, Pai said. She is especially proud of the fact that in spite of the market turmoil in recent years, she successfully guided her team and their clients through and the group is now reaching new highs.

Although she acknowledged that there can be challenges of leading a multi-generational team, Pai enjoys discovering new ways to be an effective leader and utilize the individual strengths and talents of everyone on her team. “It is a very dynamic environment where it is important to strike a balance between motivating senior professionals and mentoring the rising stars,” she explained.

According to Pai, the team-centric environment promoted by the leaders at her firm creates a wonderful company culture where everyone knows they are appreciated. “As many companies have been forced to make job cuts throughout the market downturn, Fiduciary Trust has emerged with new technologies, resources and talent to provide our clients with the best investment solutions,” she explained.

One of the newest investment avenues Pai and her team are following is ESG investing, which stands for Environmental, Social and Government investing. “ESG awareness can go a long way with investors who are committed to these issues,” said Pai. Right now, Pai is conducting extensive research in this area to gauge client interest. “If ESG is ranking high among our clients, then we will respond by dedicating more resources to this new alternative investment channel,” she added.

Another area of interest, Pai indicated, is to expand opportunities in the global high net worth markets, such as Asia and Latin America. “Asia, for example, represents one of the highest growth segments currently and we are strategizing on how to expand our presence in Asia,” Pai explained. She will be attending the Society of Trust and Estate Practitioners (“STEP”) Asia Conference in Hong Kong this fall in order to stay on top of Asia’s rapidly-evolving wealth management landscape.

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September 12th, 2014 | 6:00 am

Emerging Manager Mandates Grow but Getting Funded Remains a Challenge

iStock_000002351861XSmallBy Beth Senko

Demand for emerging managers has grown for both altruistic and pure profit-making goals. From a social good standpoint, publicly-held pensions and investment funds reach out to emerging fund managers and brokerages as a way of selecting managers that represent the diversity of their beneficiaries. At the same time, investors are looking to emerging managers as a way of increasing their returns. The challenge seems to be getting the funds into the hands of the emerging managers.

An increasing number of states, municipalities and other public pensions, have emerging manager mandates. Each week, Crain’s Pensions & Investments, lists new manager searches from an array of funds. In just the past few months, funds that have added or are searching for emerging managers include: New York City Pension Fund, St. Louis Employees, Illinois Investment Board and CALPERS. According to a study by KPMG (formerly Rothstein Kass), Women In Alternative Investments: A Marathon Not a Sprint, the number of funds with emerging manager mandates continues to grow; however, implementing these mandates appears to be more of a challenge.

The study notes that most funding for women-owned-and-managed funds comes from high-net-worth individuals and family offices despite growth in the number of mandates at pensions and endowments. The study’s authors comment, “while perhaps not as speedy as some would like, diversity mandates, as well as demonstrated outperformance by women managers, are driving investors to increase allocations to women-run funds. In fact, nearly 25 percent of the investors polled for this report indicated they would increase their allocations to women-owned or-managed funds in the coming year by some margin.”

Is funding a supply problem?
In its 2013 study, Women in Alternative Investments: Building Momentum in 2013 and Beyond, the study’s authors noted that of the 366 women polled, only 5% had received emerging manager funding despite the number of mandates. That number improved somewhat in 2014’s study to 8.5%, but the study did not look at the size of that funding – suggesting that funding levels may still be quite low, even at firms receiving emerging manager funding.

At the same time, the vast majority of investors surveyed, (93%) have no mandate to invest in women-owned or –managed funds. The primary reason given was “lack of supply.”

Kelly Easterling, formerly a principal at Rothstein Kass (now part of KPMG) comments in the report, “Investors and women-owned and -managed funds are faced with an interesting dilemma of which comes first, the chicken or the egg. One of the reasons that investors are not able to invest in diversity funds is the lack of diversity funds available for investment. Without a large supply of funds, it’s difficult to achieve appropriate portfolio diversification or, for that matter, put enough money to work to move the performance dial. On the other hand, until there is more money flowing to women-owned and -managed funds, it’s unlikely that there will be a stampede of new fund launches. Unfortunately, that paradox slows the process down for both sides of the equation.”

Or a structural issue?
In our view, however, a “lack of supply” is too simplistic an answer to the gap between emerging manager mandates and funding. Differences in scale seem to be one aspect of this disconnect.

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