This year, Cunningham became the first female president of the New York Stock Exchange — the largest stock exchange in the world, which, notably, didn’t have a first female member until 1967 — about 175 years after it was founded. “It’s helpful to tell my story because it means that other women can hear that there are opportunities out there available to them that they may not have realized,” Cunningham says.
self-confidence, and its companion feeling, self-efficacy, or the ability to actually achieve goals, doesn't come out of the box like that, says David Ballard, assistant executive director for organizational excellence at the American Psychological Association. Especially for women and people of color, there are systemic barriers stalling their success, regardless of their own confidence in their abilities. "We know opportunities are not equal, so we can prepare individuals to address this and be successful," he says. "But if we don't simultaneously address the systemic issues, it's an uphill battle for them."
Women with an associate’s degree, for example, earn an average salary of $43,000—close to (though still lower than) the $47,000 earned by men with just a high school diploma. Women with a bachelor’s degree earn $61,000 on average, just slightly above the $59,000 for men with associate’s degrees. And finally, women with a master’s degree or higher bring in an average $83,000 a year—while men need only a bachelor’s degree to report average earnings of $87,000.
"The smartest brands understand that athletes actually become more dimensional, relatable, and influential as moms -- and that they can leverage that for their own marketing campaigns," said Lindsay Kagawa Colas, a talent agent for Wasserman who focuses on Olympics and women. But fear of losing sponsors still remains for many female athletes. "There's so much risk involved with our jobs that I think it's just an automatic assumption that if you get pregnant you're not going to do what you do anymore," professional snowboarder Kimmy Fasani told CNN.
"You don't want to be the bad guy, so you kind of rationalize it in your head. There are lots of ways of making sense of this for yourself, which doesn't really address the kind of more structural inequalities that I would think we need to fix." Hegewisch says part of this is men's belief that while some workplaces may be unfair, theirs is not. When confronted with a pay gap between one man and one woman, she said men will often point to a reason other than gender to explain the pay disparity: "she is getting paid less because she is not as good at her job" or "I make more money because I work more hours than she does," or "the man has more qualifications."
According to a 2016 survey conducted by SheKnows Media, a women's lifestyle digital media company, 53% of women said they have purchased a product just because they liked how the brand's ads portrayed them. About 46% of women surveyed said they stopped buying a product because they didn't like the way women were portrayed in that brand's ad.
You've heard of the gender wage gap: the well-documented fact that women, on average, earn around 80 cents for every dollar a man makes (the gap is even bigger for women of color). But in reading up on the pay gap, you've likely across other terms like "pay secrecy," "pay disparity" or "pay equity." So what does all this ancillary vocabulary mean when we talk about women in the workplace?
A female presence at these events isn't just symbolic, says Radhika Parameswaren, professor at the Indiana University Media School -- it also sends an important message to the audience. "At these events, there are people who are called upon to speak, to take up space, to say 'here are the experiences that got me here,'" she says. "It's about who shows up and who speaks and who is able to project authority."
Kimmel says the program, which will be offered exclusively online, will explore the research on the impact of media representations on men. As an example, he points to the transformation of the action figure G.I. Joe, which has gotten significantly more muscular through the years. "The effect on a young boy of seeing these kinds of unbelievably, sort of hyper pumped up guys is, 'I feel small. I feel inadequate. I have to get bigger. I am not big enough,' " Kimmel said. "We have a lot of good research on the effect of these kind of media images on girls' development ... so now we have to have that parallel conversation about boys because we basically ignored them," he said.