An old man's prophecy

by Aman Singh Das | July 15, 2009

  • My Vault

On Monday, WSJ.com posted an article discussing former GE CEO Jack Welch's comment at a conference about there being no such thing as a work/life balance. Needless to say, it instantly sparked comments, blogs (yours truly as well) and tirades on social networking media.

Today, the paper published an editorial by Alexandra Lebenthal, CEO of investment advisory firm Lebenthal & Co. where she disputes the comment. In a nutshell, her tirade and many other readers come down to this: "When an organization's leader creates opportunities for balance and advancement, diversity thrives at the highest levels of that organization. When it does not, a sea of male faces will continue to peer out at us, fulfilling an old man's prophecy that women cannot have it all."

(White) male dominance remains pervasive across corporate America and while companies like Xerox are bucking the attitude--and our first African-American president is doing his share to make his administration more diverse--women remain absent from most boards and executive offices. Diversity thrives only when it is advanced from the top. And as Ms. Lebenthal points out, it’s time we recognize this attitude as an "old man prophecy."

43% feel the Welch comment is off-target in the current poll on Vault.com. What do you feel? Vote by clicking on the Poll on our homepage and see what others have to say, or write to us by clicking on the "Post a Comment" tab on the top left.

Filed Under: CSR

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