"Cultural stereotypes continue to present significant challenges for women leaders. Stereotypes routinely cause men and women to underestimate and underutilize women's leadership talent. For example, when women leaders act in gender-consistent ways — cooperative and relationship-focused — they "fit in" as women, but are often perceived as soft leaders by both genders. When women act "like men" — authoritative or ambitious — they are often viewed as too tough and overly aggressive. As a result, successful women leaders must learn to effectively thread the needle and call on the leadership attributes of men and women when the time demands."
That blue line is my balance of PTO (paid time off). That purple is a hypothetical line from May if I hadn't used any of my time off how much I would have now. I haven't even taken a vacation! All this is school and other obligations bleeding away my time off. It would be interesting to drop lines in finals weeks and see how much of a hit I'm taking from those alone.
China keeps its currency cheap so as to promote exports -- especially to the United States -- thus creating jobs for China's needy millions. How extreme is China's manipulation? Well, think of it this way: Since September 2008, the U.S. dollar has declined 30 percent against the currency of number one trade partner, Canada. Against number two, China? Flat until this summer, then down only five percent.
It is a question worth pondering as one surveys the makeup of the industry as a whole: mostly Caucasian men, with nearly a third of the total workforce 50 to 59 years old. Among larger contractors, about 40% of all employees, many of them involved in major defense programs, will be eligible for retirement within several years.
Part of the problem with attracting "the best and brightest" to a mature industry is that you are competing with the new and trendy. Aeronautics and space were in that position once - think of the 1950s and 1960s in southern California - but the bloom went off the rose with the 1970s layoffs, and since then the hot tickets have been IT, biomedical engineering, and robotics.You do have to wade back in and compete. And indeed to some extent, the problems we see in aerospace might be of its own making, along with its customers. See my post today: what is exciting about 25-year procurement cycles? You become an engineer to make things, not support the tenth analysis of alternatives that may (this time) lead to an RFI, before the customer takes his ball and goes home.It's fast-cycle companies that are attracting the talent (Scaled, SpaceX, Insitu, iRobot, Aurora, to name a few). But it is still industry giants that have most of the money.
But since graduation, I've applied to countless jobs across the industry with no response. After nine months of searching I eventually went back to graduate school to try and improve my chances and keep my skills sharp, but so far it's only resulted in a single phone interview. I'm not alone, either - some of my friends have sent out over a hundred applications with no success, and my graduate classes are filled with people who gave up for the time being on getting into the aerospace industry and went back to school. I hear stories at job fairs and company presentations of hiring managers that are swamped with hundreds of applications for each entry position, and the booths of companies like Lockheed and Boeing often have lines just as long as those at Apple and Google.
Companies like Apple and Google are magnets for young people, but can you imagine any of the 20 largest companies trying to duplicate the work environment that exists in those iconic enterprises? Probably not. You do not want your culture to look too different from that of your customer, one senior executive observed.
Take the housing market. Plenty of people out there have a vested interest in it picking up again. But plenty of other people have an interest in it staying down. I get it. Some people are underwater and want/need it to go up again. And plenty of other people would like to buy and want it to go down even further to make that easier. Or just want to be right in their feeling that the market is still overinflated.
Take Michael David White, over at HousingStory.net. Here's his graph for where he thinks prices are going:
Case-Schiller has only been collecting data since 1986. I grabbed the data from my hometown county, which looks pretty similar to his curve fit but might be more representative of living in a higher cost of living than looking at the whole nation averaged together. If you assume from about 1997 and on is an abberation, and do a linear fit from 1986 to 1997 and extrapolate it on into the future you get a line that looks very similar to what White came up with.
And that's the danger of data extrapolation. It's plenty fun to graph some data and draw some lines. If you have a specific agenda, it's not hard to find something to back it up. But truth is it's just not a good way to make a conclusion. I expect Mr. White gets a lot of press and blog hits from people who want to buy right now and are really hoping prices will drop even more. They might or they might not. But these lines could tell any story you wanted them to.
We choose to go to the moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard, because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one which we intend to win, and the others, too.
Ah, but a man's reach should exceed his grasp,or what's a heaven for?