Women and Men, Career, Life and Their Choices

women and men
Tips and Observations, Inspired By “Makers: Women Who Make America”


Watching a recent PBS broadcast “Makers: Women Who Make America” was a moving experience for me. Whew, I didn’t realize how much time had gone by. Many of the stories and events described in the telecast happened in my lifetime, while I was busy experiencing much of what was discussed. The timeline of events revealed seeds of the change, the catalysts that altered roles of men and women in business and in life.

A bit of trivia was revealed in a look back to Ellen DeGeneres’ first performance on “The Tonight Show” in 1986: Did you know she was the first female comedian invited to sit on the couch and talk to Johnny? Was that even obvious to us at the time? In contrast to that, I learned that women today are ambivalent about the women’s movement in spite of the enormous difference it has made in their lives. Many of their mothers marched on Fifth Avenue in New York, read Ms. magazine, supported the first female politician from Colorado ever elected to Congress (Patricia Schroeder) applauded the appointment of the first woman to the Supreme Court (Sandra Day O’Connor) and helped to pass the Equal Rights Amendment in the 1970s. This next generation grew up thinking that their mothers' efforts were unnecessarily emphasized and overly dramatic.

As you read this sequel to my last post, Tips for Career Success, please stay with me. While it may seem like I am speaking to women, there are tips and suggestions here that benefit all of us—a workforce within a community and in a world working together.

We all get so many messages—how to be, what to do, how to have the right career or not and how to be OK with it, whom to like and whom not to like—and sometimes we lose sight of the fact that we are one group of people, living on one planet, and that we would be better off if we considered ourselves equal. Maybe even the expression “having it all” is overly used. Who wouldn’t want to have everything but knows they can’t? Peter Pan pointed this out to Wendy: “Dreams do come true, if only we wish hard enough. You can have anything in life if you will sacrifice everything else for it.”


About the author

Andrea Cotter

Andrea Cotter, President and Founder, ACotter Global Brands. Andrea coaches executives and teams helping them to put in place strategies and communications that will take them to the next level.  She is also an Adjunct Professor of Strategic Communication at the NYU School of Continuing and Professional Studies. 
During a 30-year career at IBM Corporation, Andrea Cotter held many integrated marketing and communications roles for various IBM products and services and executive roles as Global Director of Linux and of Healthcare and Life Science Marketing.  At UPMC in Pittsburgh, PA, Andrea was SVP of Communications, responsible for enterprise-wide brand marketing, advertising, clinical marketing and public relations.   Most recently Andrea served as temporary President of a brand consultancy in New York, New York.