Top female execs move up faster

SENIOR-level female executives are being promoted more rapidly than their male colleagues, but experience higher levels of stress and work-family conflict, according to a new study. The study was released by Paul Ray Berndtson, an executive research firm based in Ft. Worth, Texas, and Cornell University's Center for Advanced Human Resource Studies.

The study of more than 3,500 senior managers links success with the executive's willingness and ability to work long hours, have few dependent-care responsibilities, and view work as the central focus of life. Here are some of the study's findings:

* Female executives - 7 percent of the executive survey population - received their last promotion 2.6 years ago, while male executives received their last promotion 3.3 years ago. (Females, however, tended to average only two-thirds as many promotions as their male counterparts during their careers.)

* The average salary of female executives was $90,168. The average salary of male executives was $129,580. Male and females worked about the same number of hours a week: 55.

* Female executives were 17 percent more likely than men to say work interfered with family activities, and 14 percent more likely to say family responsibilities interfered with work performance. Females spent almost twice as many hours a week caring for their children than did males.

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