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The Independent Culture
Careers boost

Job prospects for graduates have improved - 52 per cent of those in employment find their first job in their preferred career within six months of leaving university, compared with 50 per cent a year ago, according to research from Barclays Bank. However, the fourth annual survey, published at the weekend, shows that 27 per cent of graduates are working on fixed-term contracts, lasting on average for 11 months.

Missed targets

Presentation and media skills training is not reaching the business people who need it most, according to research from the Aziz Corporation, an independent communications consultancy. The research shows that personnel directors are most likely to receive such assistance, while sales and marketing directors - who are usually responsible for sales and new business presentations - are the least likely to get it. Khalid Aziz, chairman of Aziz Corporation, claims personnel directors are failing in their duty to direct training resources to where they are most needed and would most benefit businesses.

High tech, low pay

Women in marketing get a raw deal, even in "non-traditional" high-tech industries, according to research by The Foundation, a year-old forum for senior IT industry marketing directors and managers. Salaries for female marketing staff in the industry are lower than those for men, even when there is little or no difference in the jobs they do.

Inheriting the blame

Stereotyping, prejudice, balancing family commitments and the glass ceiling continue to be key issues for women in business, regardless of their age, according to research for the Women in Management networking organisation by the Delta Consultancy. Pressure of work, stress and office politics were the most frequently-stated issues. Women in Management chief executive Lynn Smith said she was surprised and disappointed that "the new, more assertive generation of women" faced the same sort of discrimination as their older colleagues.

Ethics, girls and boys

Business ethics has progressed a long way from being mistaken for a county east of London, with 57 per cent of Britain's largest companies claiming to have codes of conduct either in place or under preparation, according to new research. The Institute of Business Ethics says this compares with 18 per cent in 1987, when the institute began its campaign for all leading companies to put them in place.

Roger Trapp

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