Women Need to Break More Glass

I recently read that only 6% of American monuments feature women as the subject. This defines “you can’t be it if you can’t see it.” Women’s health does not get the same funding as men’s. Women CEOs only lead 10% of corporate companies, yet female-led companies’ return rates are higher by over 100% in the past ten years than men’s. Women are the majority of the population, yet they are not the majority in the workplace. “Me too” gave all women a sigh of relief to finally speak up, and although this movement brought the reality of bad behavior to the forefront, there is much more to do.

Years ago, Janet Hanson, who, besides being the first woman promoted into sales at Goldman Sachs, began 85 Broad, an organization connecting women across the globe, invited me to have a one-on-one with her at a women’s event. Most of the women came out of corporate America.

I do not recall precisely what we were discussing, but a woman got up from the audience to ask a question but spoke about her frustrations. She was at Goldman Sachs and had left because of the lack of opportunity as a woman. The reality is there are only a few people at the top of Goldman Sachs or any organization, and for most women, the ladder becomes rungless at one point. It does for some men, too, but not in the same way. Too many men get kicked up the ladder, but women rarely do.

My advice to this woman was to start her own Goldman Sachs. She was sitting in a room full of incredibly successful women who probably had better numbers than most men. If you want change, create it yourself.

Why should women have to succumb to how men set up the world? The world needs some serious glass broken right now. What if, in every industry existing today, women decided to leave and begin the same sector with only women at the top? We can start with the banking world. It appears that they need a lot of help. Then move on to other industries, from media to the art world. There is so much that needs to change that could be run better and have better cultures, and it is long overdue to change how the majority of everything has been set in stone by male leaders.

And most of our biggest industries have been started by men. What would they look like if they were run by women who decided to break every single rule and create entirely different cultures? Workplaces that cared about their families, their health, and their life outside of the workplace. Where profits were distributed to everyone in the business, anything over a certain amount of profits would go to help others less fortunate. What a world we could create.

Change is afoot. Nobody is quite sure where we are going. We are living longer, and technology is moving at a light speed. Based on what is happening in the world these days, I genuinely believe the world would be a better place if women transformed, amended, or at least modified the world. Isn’t it time we broke more glass?