Yesterday, I went to the Voices of Experience talk on Women’s Leadership in the 21st Century at DU –  Three panelists and a moderator discussed the changes that have happened among women in business the last couple of decades.

I found four areas of the discussion interesting.  First, all four spoke about how although women have been in the business field for decades, there is still a glass ceiling for women getting to senior management and there are still vast pay inequities.  Second, everyone agreed that women bring new insights to the table and that, in general, women have better relationship-building and collaboration skills.  Third, the next generation wants something different than their predecessors – leaders who will inspire, are committed to the community, and are authentic.  Finally, the panelists believed that the biggest problems facing women are women don’t take risks, don’t build alliances as well as men, and don’t like to take credit for their ideas.

However, the most interesting part of the whole talk was an audience member that spoke about his wife being questioned about starting a family when applying for a promotion.  I have never met a man that was questioned about starting a family in a similar circumstance, but have met women facing similar circumstances. Makes me wonder how far women have actually come in the business world and how much further we have to go.

Does anyone have experiences with glass ceilings or making it to the top?  Does anyone think that the next generation of women will have it easier than the current one?