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As the new school year began last September, a reported 865,000 women did not return to work, and research reveals that as many as 2.4 million women departed the workforce since February 2020, as compared to 1.8 million men. This was a massive turnaround from months earlier when it was reported that for the first time in history, women represented the majority of the workforce across America, holding 50.4% of all jobs in 2019.

We all need to be concerned about this exodus of women from the workforce, which McKinsey & Company has called “an emergency for corporate America.” Companies and employers need to double down on efforts to hire, retain and advance women employees while also embracing greater flexibility during the pandemic and beyond.

However, Jean Case writes that we can’t afford to wait for every employer to take action. Many women face unique challenges to advancing in the workplace that we can, to some degree, begin to tackle. Check out these three principles that are meant to guide women to get ahead at work, both today and also down the road when a return to traditional employment will undoubtedly serve up new barriers for working women.

Huge congrats to Sonal Shah and her team on their new organization! The Asian American Foundation is poised to bring innovation and opportunity to the AAPI community and, having seen Sonal at work on numerous issues, we know that this important initiative is in good hands.
ESG Funds Are Surging. Without Standards, They Remain ‘Buyer Beware.’
The momentum is strong for ESG policies and investing — with ESG funds representing nearly a quarter of all investments in US stock and bond mutual funds in 2020. Jean Case urges us to take advantage of this opportunity to rally around clear, consistent systems that inject more transparency, measurement, and standards into the movement.
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Climate Fund Choices for Investors Are Multiplying
The global assets under management of mutual funds and exchange-traded funds with climate change as a key theme almost tripled last year to $177 billion. This momentum corresponds to the 76 new climate-focused funds introduced in 2020, bringing the worldwide total to about 400 offerings.
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Shift in How White Entrepreneurs Approach Diversity?
Fortune’s S. Mitra Kalita writes that startups led by white entrepreneurs are increasingly trying to incorporate diversity and inclusion into their businesses — from hiring to committing to the long haul.
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Growing Up With the 'Best of Both Worlds' Helped This Chinese-American Founder
Youtech founder and CEO Wilbur You says his family, both in the U.S. and in China, taught him the values he needed to succeed.
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How to Keep Women from Leaving the Workforce During Covid
With Mother's Day on the horizon, many are reflecting on the issues around childcare that are keeping many working women from staying in the workforce. Read how some companies are answering the challenge with innovative policies and support.
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Helping Women Advance in the Workplace: The ABCs of Getting Ahead
As we begin to emerge from the pandemic, there are many large-scale changes needed for an equitable recovery for women. In the meantime, Jean Case encourages women to be all they can.
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