The Measure of Success… by Nancy Brophy
Posted by SeeJanePublish
This year I started a new job with a company which boasts it has more women earning over $250,000 than any other company. Is this true? I don’t know, but it is an interesting claim. Like many of you, I watched the Makers Documentary about the changes in women’s roles in society over the past fifty plus years. It is easy to forget the past.
But this film jogged my memory. I can remember being between jobs and as a measure of desperation deciding to take the Civil Service Test. The man who helped me hired no one. His job was to hand out requested material. When I asked what positions were available he wanted to know if I could type. I responded by asking him if I’d been male, would he have asked the same question?
I never did take that test. But in truth I doubt that working for the government was ever my destiny.
There are some universal truths about people. We hunt obsessively for signs to help us interpret our lives and others. For example there have always been predictions about physical aspects of men. Big feet equate to bigger body parts elsewhere. At the risk of rudeness I do want to point out if that were true, women would only date men who wore clown shoes.
I read an article today in the blog section of the Huffington Post entitled, How to Tell If A Woman is Going to Be Successful In Business by Ashley Merryman and Bo Branson, authors of Top Dog: the Science of Winning and Losing.
The usual culprits blamed for the lack of venture-funded female entrepreneurs are that most women don’t have enough technical expertise to succeed and/or that, at its core, Silicon Valley must be a sexist boys’ club. But focusing on those arguments — as legitimate as they may be — means we can forget to consider any other explanations. And it really doesn’t help us understand an even more interesting version of the question: why do some women break through?
Apparently like big feet, the ratio of the index finger to the ring finger is a determinate. Look at your right hand, palm up. Is your ring finger longer than your index finger or vice versa? According to the article:
…the ratio of index to ring finger correlates with traits such as spatial ability, risk-taking, and assertiveness. It’s connected to success in competitive sports like soccer and skiing.
The most successful entrepreneurs had ring fingers 10% to 20% longer than their index finger.
Okay, that lets me out.
My ring finger is definitely shorter than my index finger. However the article does go on to say that even if this is true it only accounts for 40-60% of success. I’m assuming some success is attributed to drive, ambition and opportunity.
The thing I found most interesting about this study and even my day job is how one defines “Success” in business. Is success measured only financially? Genre writing for the most part does not pay well. There are a few break-out writers, but most are considered mid-list, at best.
I like my new job. I like the lack of glass ceiling, but I love writing. Am I a successful writer? I think so, but financially it doesn’t pay the bills. Do I fail to qualify by someone else’s rules? What do think?
Posted on March 2, 2013, in General and tagged author, best selling books, General, Maker's Documentary, romance, See Jane Publish, Top Dog: the Science of Winning and Losing. Bookmark the permalink. 11 Comments.