The workplace has long been a hotbed for female inequality. And the sad truth is, there hasn’t been much improvement over the past decade. Here are a few facts about women in the workplace:
- On average, women earn about $0.81 to every $1 that men earn.
- Only 22% of C-suite executives are women.
- 35% of women in full-time corporate jobs report experiencing sexual harassment.
It’s clear that it’s as important as ever to work to empower women in the workplace. If you’re looking to incorporate female empowerment into your workplace environment, you’ve come to the right place. We’re here to tell you four ways to empower women in the workplace, so that you can do your part to close the professional gender gap.
1. Reassess Your Leadership & Management
Is your workplace yet another that promotes women to leadership and management positions at a lower rate than men? It’s time to reassess to ensure that you’re not a part of the problem. Take a look at both who you’ve considered and who you’ve selected for leadership positions. If you find that it’s mostly men, consider why that is.
Does the problem stem from misogynistic practices in your workplace? Are you providing women with professional development at the same rate as men? Do you pay them at the same rate? Do you provide them with the necessary resources to further their skills? If not, it’s time that you make a change. You may even want to consider introducing a Diversity Committee (and putting plenty of women on it!) to make sure that your diversity doesn’t just extend to women, but to all different types of people.
2. Create a Flexible Work Environment
Traditionally, women play many different roles in life. They may be the mother, the caregiver to an unwell relative, and the breadwinner of a family, all at the same time. An overly structured work environment can be prohibitive to qualified women who may not be able to work within your strict parameters.
Consider flexible working hours or the ability to work from home. This will open your doors to a wealth of qualified females who may be the perfect fit for your company, but need a bit of flexibility to make it happen.
3. Be Considerate with Parental Leave
Speaking of mothers, motherhood is a significant and life changing experience for any woman who chooses to take it on. United States standards for parental leave are extremely poor among the landscape of developed countries.
The requirement in the US for parental leave is six weeks of paid parental leave. That’s only a month and a half for working women to bond with their newborn child, as well as learn to navigate all of the new and challenging parts of motherhood, including the countless sleepless nights, without the additional stress of work. If you want to empower women in the workplace, it’s imperative that you offer a considerate and competitive parental leave policy. Give new mothers the opportunity to bond with their new child and adapt to this new way of life.
Additionally, make the office inviting for them when they do return to work. Consider adding a mothers’ lounge to your space for nursing mothers. Be flexible and understanding when a mother may need to leave early to take care of their child. Doing so shows women that your workplace is a safe space.
4. Make Health and Wellbeing a Part of Your Culture
The modern workplace encompasses so much more than just an office. The most competitive workplaces offer their employees benefits to improve their lives, from free lunches to happy hours, and so much more. One of the best ways to empower women in the workplace is to make their health and wellbeing a part of your culture. A healthy workplace is a happy workplace. You can do that in a number of different ways, including:
- Ensure your healthcare package covers mental health care as well as physical.
- Provide your employees with a gym membership so they can stay physically fit and lower stress levels.
- Stock your office with supplements and wellness products that promote wellbeing, including things like chamomile tea, healthy snacks, and organic CBD gummies.
Lead by example and use these tips to position yourself as an equal opportunity employer who cares about your team’s success, no matter their gender!
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