Black Women More Likely Than White Counterparts to Strive for Powerful Careers: Study
Dan Dalton

Black women are leading the pack when it comes to career aspirations. A new study from the Center for Talent Innovation found that Black women are significantly more ambitious when it comes to wanting a powerful job, and we are more confident in our abilities to do that job successfully.

Twenty-two percent of Black women surveyed said that they want a powerful job, compared to a mere 8 percent of White women, and 43 percent of us are confident that we will succeed. Among White women, that number is 30 percent. However, more than 50 percent of Black women surveyed reported feeling frustrated with their sluggish rate of advancement in their jobs, compared with just 28 percent of White women. 

“Black women are committed and motivated to attain a powerful position not only in their workplaces, but also in their communities,” said Center for Talent Innovation CEO Sylvia Ann Hewlett in a press release. 

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Researchers speculate that many Black women have been influenced by watching their female family members hold—and flourish in—powerful roles within their communities. Additionally, the report’s authors say that because Black women’s voices are oftentimes stifled, we are constantly pursuing opportunities where our voices will be heard. 

It is for this reason, the study says, that corporations must figure out a way to reach out to Black women directly.

“With their vision, commitment and leadership experience,” Hewlett said, “Black women represent a pool of would-be executives that multinational companies can ill-afford to underutilize.”