Tips For Female Executives

Women can't change the sexist attitudes they find in the global marketplace, but here's how they can take advantage of them.

Women in business, especially internationally, face certainpredictable issues--being treated as if they're invisible,encountering stereotypical views of women's capabilities, beinglooked at as some sort of a phenomenon and even being considered sounusual, they're treated as a "third sex."

While you might initially consider these to be problems, theycould work to your benefit. There seems to be an odd respect forwomen in some cultures. This real appreciation of femininity giveswomen some room to negotiate. Here are some strategies for women touse when doing business abroad:

  • Research attitudes toward women in a given country before yougo, but don't automatically assume you'll be treated thatway.
  • Connect with American woman already in the location where youwant to conduct business. They can give you further insight and mayeven be able to provide introductions to people willing to opendoors for you.
  • Choose your battles. Decide which behavior will get you thecontract: confrontation, removing yourself from the situation orexploiting the sexist behavior.

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