Submitted by Susan Smith Blakely
A recent study, as reported in the ABA Journal, has confirmed that a greater percentage of female lawyers have a longer path to partnership than their male colleagues. This is no surprise to those of us who follow this kind of research, but the confirmation is always disappointing.
Information about the study was pointed out to me by my son, and I was delighted to have him share this information with me for two reasons. First, because he obviously thinks it is important, and, second, because his law school shared it with not only the female law students but the male law students as well. We need more of that. Although some of the issues that deter women in the workplace are typical gender issues, the other major issue---the work-life challenge---is not specific to women. Male lawyers also are beginning to feel the work-life struggle as they spend less and less time with their families and in pursuit of their avocational interests to accommodate upward mobility at work, and work-life is beginning to be treated as gender neutral.
This is good. If breast cancer was perceived as a non-gender specific disease, a cure for breast cancer would have been found long ago. So with the work-life struggle. We will take all the help we can get.