Promotions: To Ask or Not to Ask...

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How upfront should women be about their ambitions? eFC readers had no shortage of opinions.

Women on Wall Street Say Female-Focused Programs Work

Two readers commented on an anecdote within our report from the annual Women on Wall Street conference. The anecdote detailed how an investment banker resolved to express her goals directly, after she lost out on a promotion to a male colleague who'd explicitly asked the boss how to get promoted. One user responded with dismay, while another urged caution.

"This is actually a classic example of a culture problem that rewards pushiness and ensures that those who shout loudest (rather than those who do the best work) get to the top first," wrote Gabrielle. "This kind of culture is self-perpetuating - when the loud, shouty men get to the top of the tree they promote others on the same basis - but ultimately doesn't do the bank any favours. Isn't it actually in banks' best interests to reward employees on the basis of their performance...?"

Disagreeable Female, who works in hedge funds, wrote, "I verbalized my intent on getting promoted (during a downturn) and was not so long after fired for no good reason... I later found out my senior (a male) who was afraid of being replaced by me had a lot to do with it. Bottom line: be very careful of the politics especially when you work with insecure but influential people."

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Should You Take Notes in an Interview?

Hannah, who works in sales and marketing, wrote that taking notes during a recent interview worked out nicely for her. "It helped to keep me focused on what the position entailed and afforded me the opportunity to tailor my qualifications to the position. It also helped to tailor my questions at the end of the interview. It must have worked - I got the position!"

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