Wednesday, May 25, 2005

Women's Business Leadership

I'm thinking about getting an MBA. I'm shopping for schools in the greater Boston area. So last night I attended a forum at the Boston University School of Management called, "Women's Business Leadership," where many Massachusetts b-schools converged to recruit women into their programs. For opening statements, the Dean of the BUSMG offered words. And words is about all he offered.

He started out by saying that we can all agree that poverty, world hunger, child labor and other such social ills are undesirable. We can all stand in opposition to them. And we can all agree that the arts, music, schools and other such cultural institutions are essential. Our niche, as future global leaders, is to understand that businesses are the solution to the world's problems.

[I'm getting skeptical, but he's still not too evil. I suppose he could take a jog down the 'socially responsible business practices' track.]

The reality is - businesses create resources and resources fund the organizations that solve social ills.

[what? uber-self importance.]

World hunger could be solved if all people were part of the wonderful engine of commerce.

[simplistic, perhaps?]

If we spread successful business practices across the globe, we could see a radical shift in the quality of life for all people.

And on-and-on-and-on he went. Please, Mr. Dean, don't insult my intelligence. Perhaps this is a room full of idealistic, impressionable young(ish) women who, according the latest stereotype, care deeply about the problems of the world. But perhaps there are money-hungry, power-monger, get-ahead-at-all-costs women in the audience too. This soft-peddling commerce as 'good for the world' shit is completely dismissing the rapid capitalists in the crowd. So those pointy-toe-and-heel ladies are aggravated.

And my clog-wearing-ass is aggravated because this man is speaking to me as if I'm ignorant. It's simple math ... right? World problems + good businesses = fat happy people. Huh? Does he actually believe that if U.S.-style business spread to every little area of the globe, that all those profits would naturally be spread among the world's people to create harmony and equality? Or might I believe that those profits would line the pockets of the executives and shareholders? Yeah. Simple math indeed.

Please, Mr. Dean, don't play your stereotypical "women care about world hunger" shit with me and then insult my intelligence with your simplistic analysis. Thanks, but no thanks.


Erin said...

hey! I was there too (and working on some lace). Ignoring him, I found it interesting. I liked the Bentley speaker- I'd just read one of those Catalyst studies mentioned in a NYT op ed piece on gender differences and competition.

Anonymous said...

Oh lovely. GWB lite. If you want to talk to a socialist with an MBA (who today is thinking about getting a PhD in strategic management, though that might not last 6 hours), let me know. I'm not sure I can say anything of use, but you'd know you weren't the only pinko feminist doing this stuff. :)