“Voice for Everyone”—Life-Sci Women Talk Venture, Pharma Gender Gap

(Page 2 of 2)

is a two-parter: How would your wife or partner describe you? And what about you drives them nuts?

Coming up through the ranks of biopharmas such as Bristol-Myers Squibb (NASDAQ: BMY), Genzyme, and Jazz Pharmaceuticals (NASDAQ: JAZZ), Smith was unhappy about male colleagues being promoted when she felt equally or more qualified. “But you can’t demand to be recognized,” said Smith. “It sounds like whining.”

When Suennen asked if the panelists have had problems with men working for them, Smith said that “there are definitely men who just can’t deal,” as well as some who are looking to be mothered, “which gets old fast, especially when you already have kids at home.”

(Marquet recommended finding men who are “strong enough to express their feminine energy.”)

When it came to policy decisions, however, the panelists had a mixed reaction to a suggestion that the U.S. follow the lead of Europe, where rules are in place to have, by 2020, women in 40 percent of non-executive board seats at public companies.

Hutton said that when Canaan ends an investment in a public company and she leaves a board, she always encourages the search committee to look for a woman to replace her. Marquet said it should be encouraged, but not mandated.

Current numbers on the gender balance at the board and executive levels aren’t readily available for the life sciences; the Healthcare Businesswomen’s Association is working on a study to be released later this year.

Meanwhile, we do know that at the end of 2013, only one healthcare company in the Fortune 1000 had a woman CEO (Heather Bresch of Mylan). Smith said she takes exception to women being singled out for being “ambitious”—while it’s simply expected of men—-so let’s just say that turning Raptor into a Fortune 1000 company and joining that very small list is just the sort of huge goal Smith might shoot for.

Single PageCurrently on Page: 1 2 previous page