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Sun 26 Jun 2011 05:06 PM

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Men savvier networkers than women, study says

Women, often seen as better communicators, are less likely to extend themselves for fear of rejection

Men savvier networkers than women, study says

When it comes to professional networking, men around the world are savvier than women, according to new data.

Business networking site LinkedIn, which analysed information from members in 13 countries, found men were the overwhelming winners in networking.

"Men are broader and quicker at assessing if there is an opportunity," said Nicole Williams, the company's connection director. "They are quicker to makes moves."

The company, which has more than 100 members worldwide, defined online professional networking savviness in two ways: a ratio of the number of connections men and women have; and the ratio of male members on the site to female members.

They found that women, often seen as better communicators and relationship builders, are less likely to extend themselves for fear of rejection.

"Networking is seen as inherently risky," Williams explained. "We take rejection more personally when asking for a raise, promotion or connections."

Instead women are better at developing deeper networks, while men aim for a network with more breadth. With the US job marketing still struggling, Williams said networking now is all about who you know in order to generate opportunities.

"Networking in an economy like this is key to finding opportunities," she said. "A qualified referral is so essential in the market place. You have to actively be looking for people to connect with."

When it came to making contacts among executives, women were savviest in Australia, the Netherlands and Britain, while men were ahead of the game in Italy.

The findings also showed that the minority sex in industries were often more aggressive and successful networkers. For example, women in Brazil and Canada in the assumedly male dominated ship building industry, make the most contacts.

"As the minority, you are using any in and every available resource," Williams explained. "You are looking at all opportunities."

She cited a similarly surprising example in the cosmetics industry in the U.S., where men are the most effective networkers. But women excelled in the ranching and tobacco industries.

The US, Canada, France, Germany, India, Australia, Brazil, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain and Britain were included in the study.

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Iqbal Tamimi 9 years ago

I can see no statistics or figures that support the findings of this research and I can't see how generalizing the findings make this study accurate or scientifically clear. More information about the methodology should have been included and explained. Women from my experience are excellent net workers and for that reasons most PR companies employ a woman as a manager. The statement above might be right if they are talking about individual networking seeking job opportunities, not about networking as part of an establishment.

Telcoguy 9 years ago

Link here
About women in pr organizations not so sure. Most pr firms I am aware were founded by men, and if you check Buson, the one i am more familiar with, only 5 of the 15 top positions in the US are taken by women and 5 out of the 27 for Emea. I would not call that a majority.