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ARF Event 12/06/06 – Women in Analytics

The ARF held a Women in Analytics event in Chicago last week on “Work Life Balance: Does Technology Help or Hinder?” Here are some key takeaways of the presenters:

Joline McGoldrick, Kantar Millward Brown, set the stage with some disturbing facts from their Digital Life of Moms Study:

  • Women account for 85% of all consumer purchases. Not just food and home goods but everything from automotive to healthcare
  • 50% of moms feel marketers don’t understand them
  • A gender study representing the corporate pipeline in the US showed that while women and men were almost equal for entry-level professionals, women only accounted for 19% of the C-Suite vs men

Kate Sirkin, Publicis Media and ARF Board Member provided some practical perspectives on work life balance:

  • There is no “balance” today–It’s work/life Integration
  • You need to find a fluidity and a way of working that lets you decide what works best for you
  • Gravitate towards people, companies, and jobs that are more supportive

Stacey Symonds, Orbitz/Cheap Tickets, Expedia provided some tips on technology use:

  • Technology enables the good and bad
  • Never check emails/texts at meal time
  • Don’t forget: spend time offline too!

Kelly Twohig, Google reminded the group that it’s a CHOICE:

  • At various stages in your life, time at work vs time focused on personal time will vary
  • Stay flexible and shift with your changing priorities
  • Your answer should not always be “yes”

Overall summary of the event

  • Advocate for women’s seat at the table
  • It’s not a technology problem, it’s a choice challenge. Use the technology to control your life, don’t let the technology control you
  • Many of us influence the brand messages and advertising. Be firm in the portrayal of women. Too often the communications we are part of are the worst examples
  • Take care of yourself first