Let’s Talk About Sex

Is the new world of work as open for women as it is for men? Yes and no. These Fast Company stories about gender relations show that the more things change, the more a few things stay the same.


Open to Women?

Forget about breaking the glass ceiling — the new economy would break out of the whole box. That was the promise. Just how well has it been kept? To find out, Fast Company surveyed six successful women, high achievers in industries as diverse as autos, packaged goods, finance, and medicine. The question: Are we living in a meritocracy or a machotocracy? Alison Overholt


Sisterhood Is Digital

Anita Borg is a living legend among computer scientists. She is also leading a worldwide movement to redesign the relationship between women and technology. Some of the world’s most powerful technology companies are finally paying attention. Katharine Mieszkowski

She Knows How to Play the Game

The startup revolution is as much about the democratization of capital as it is about the creation of new technologies. So why do women-led companies still receive only 4.6% of all venture funding? Katharine Mieszkowski

Women and Men, Work and Power

More than ever — and in more companies than ever — men and women are working together, swapping ideas, sharing power. It is no longer newsworthy when an accomplished woman is promoted to lead a business unit or to run a company full of hard-charging men. Anna Muoio


Work and Life: Helen Wilkinson

“If feminism doesn’t address what’s happening to men today, it’s not going to move forward.” Keith H. Hammonds

Change: Melissa Moss

“We’re doing what women would do for themselves — if they had the time.” Daniel H. Pink

Women With Children First?

It’s the new workplace battle — employees juggling work and kids versus childless colleagues who resent having to pick up the slack. Read our debate about “the culture of parental privilege” — and then weigh in with your views. Keith H. Hammonds

    Join the Debate Online! “Parents insist that they deserve special treatment because they’re ‘raising the future.’ They say that they’re doing the most important job in the world, so they deserve compensation. Well then, let’s treat it as a job. Let’s have job requirements, a hiring process, periodic evaluations, and the possibility of being fired …” — Eric Bamberg, Seattle, Washington “Families should be treated as society’s number-one goal. As the foundation of all cultures, family needs — especially adequate time with children — should never play second fiddle to empty dreams like money, power, or fame.” — Chris McLaughlin, Portland, Oregon

Why Aren’t There More Women at the Top?

Why can’t a woman be more like a man? Two new career books about women and the world of work offer up tired advice that was old when it was new — 20 years ago. A third offers a more thoughtful analysis. Pamela Kruger

Wonder Women in the Rude Boys’ Paradise

Microsoft upgrades its treatment of women to corner the only market that matters: talent. Fred Moody


Natural Leader

Rayona Sharpnack is a teacher and a mentor to some of the most powerful women in some of the most important companies around. Her message: Don’t worry so much about what you need to know. Instead, figure out who you need to be. Cheryl Dahle

Women’s Ways of Mentoring

Call it “wo-mentoring” — a new approach that’s more about commitment and learning than about chemistry and power. And, by the way, it also works for men. Cheryl Dahle

Stay on Track

Indy driver Sarah Fisher isn’t racing to catch up with the boys. She is patiently gaining speed and experience, so her career will outlast high-profile crashes and outstrip the competition. Anni Layne


Women on the Verge of a Power Breakthrough

The battle of the sexes flared up in the workplace long before the first Neanderthal asked his secretary to fetch him a cup of coffee — “and get one for yourself too, sweetheart.” Today the age-old skirmish has blasted into new, uncharted zones of engagement, from the erogenous to the economic. Katharine Mieszkowski

The Starbucks Sisterhood

A new generation of women is reinventing the rules of work faster than you can say, “double decaf skinny latte.” Polly LaBarre

Living Dangerously

Issue 31: “We won’t see great leaders until we see great women leaders. As role models, men are going flat.” Harriet Rubin
Issue 34: “Girl-gang members are the new mistresses of misrule.” Harriet Rubin



Issue 30: “While the balance of power has already begun to shift, most male CEOs still don’t fully get it.” Tony Schwartz
Issue 34: “What happens next is that people — especially women — burn out and end up leaving.” Tony Schwartz