It was another promise of the New Economy: We'd finally move from the old rules of the good old boys' network to a workplace based on merit. Just how well has that promise been kept? Find out what two successful women have to say. Edited

CHERRI M. MUSSER
Chief information officer, e-GM
Process information officer, supply chain
General Motors Corp.
Detroit, Michigan


I didn't even think about gender when I took my job at GM. Throughout my career, I've looked at the job and its challenges. And by doing that, I've been successful. I've never felt like I've been held back
because I'm a woman.

The New Economy is just one more step in time. I haven't seen more doors opening for women. I just think that people have gotten more sensitive to needing a work-life balance. For managers, the New Economy raised the level of sensitivity to the importance of time off and of not keeping employees on the road all the time.

My belief is that you don't focus on being female - you focus on getting the job done. If you draw too much attention to your gender, you're not a member of the team. If your business is focused on bottom-line results, you'll do well if you focus on the same thing. Then just enjoy what you're doing. Have fun, and good things will happen.

Cherri M. Musser has been overseeing information-technology applications for all supply-chain and e-GM applications worldwide since 1996. Prior to joining General motors, she spent 23 years at Texas Instruments, where she served as the company's vice president of worldwide research and development and director of corporate business systems.