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Women Stars Outperform Men in New Jobs

Harvard Business School professor Boris Groysberg is rewriting how we think about the care and feeding of "star" talent. Among his key findings in a new book is that top equity analysts often underperform when they move on to a new firm, a prime reason being is that they rely heavily on team members and resources left behind at the old company.

But there is one big exception to the rule. It seems that women do much better at having "portable" skills that help them succeed in new environs. Why should that be?

Here are some possible answers put forward by Groysberg commentators. Women:

  • Are more flexible.
  • Communicate better.
  • Deal better with stress.
  • Multitask more effectively.
I wonder, just to add to the list, whether women have developed unique skills that men don't possess simply by operating in a business world that is biased against them.

Here is Groysberg's explanation. Female star analysts, he wrote several years ago in Harvard Business Review, ""take their work environment more seriously yet rely on it less than male stars do. They look for a firm that will allow them to keep building their successful franchises their own way."

In other words, they depend more on external networks than internal ones, and they do better research on prospective employers.

Are women superstars more portable then men? What do you think?

(Photo by Flickr user gcoldironjr2003, CC 2.0)

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