Overcoming Obstacles to Get More Black Women in the C-Suite feat. Dr. Denise Streeter
Have you ever wondered why there aren't more black women in C-suite positions among black students?
In higher education, women are more likely than men to earn degrees. Black women get 64.1% of bachelor degrees, 71.5% of master's degrees, and 65.9% of doctoral medical and dental degrees. Yet a recent McKinsey study found that only 1.6% of vice presidents in corporate America are black women. Why is this happening?
Dr. Denise Streeter is a professor of finance in the Howard University School of Business and joins us to explore these statistics. She is HU bred, having earned a degree in accounting from Howard, as well as degrees in economics and finance from other institutions. Dr. Streeter has also taught courses to students of all ages, in various formats, at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, and on three continents.
She joins host Frank Tramble to talk about why these numbers don’t shock her, starting businesses vs working in the traditional corporate system, building support systems for black women in and out of corporate roles, and finding inspiration on her path.
HU2U is a production of Howard University and is produced by University FM.
Is it better for black women to start their own businesses or work in corporate America?
[05:01] The good news is that we have choices, so we can start our own businesses. And the beauty of it is that women are doing that. So we don't have to necessarily be dependent on the system if you want to hire us, but if we want to get into the system, we have to play it their way.
Overcoming obstacles with confidence
[03:18] We really have so many obstacles. We have to make sure we are overcoming, that we want to be the best at what we apply for. And sometimes, those job descriptions are tainted to keep those of us who won't do it out, but we have to build that confidence. And that's really your encouragement to motivate, help, and assist is important.
On having passion for work
[10:56] Find your passion in the place that you're going to work so that you know you're there to make deals, to bring in more clients, or whatever your thing is, because that's where you're going to be able to succeed.
Amplifying women's voices in the workplace over the years
[14:54] Women are more aware of who they are, so they're speaking up, and we're starting to join them together. So that we can be more supportive and they can know what it is that should not happen in the workplace.