• Uyên Phạm

GENDER INEQUALITY AT WORK AND HOW TO NURTURE A CULTURE OF EQUALITY



Gender equality, at its essence, is the way a company treats its men and women employees the same, and the way employees treat each other the same regardless of gender.

Sadly, not all companies do that. And the inequality includes:

  • Wage gap. According to ILOSTAT data (2020), the median gender wage gap in 115 countries is 14% in favor of men. Unequal pay is one of, if not the most common example of gender inequality in the workplace.

  • Unequal opportunities. Women are promoted less often than men, as statistics state that women make up less than 5 percent of CEOs and less than 10 percent of women are top earners in the S&P 500 (Julie Wilson, 2019).

  • Not recruiting women due to their child-bearing “responsibility”. Giving the explanation of women needing time off for their family, companies refusing to recruit them is the direct discrimination example of gender inequality at work.

  • Discriminating treatment. Being held to different or even higher standard is all it takes to constitute the unequal treatment among employees. An action, for example, making aggressive feedback, would be deemed “leadership-worthy” for this gender but not for other ones.

And more to count.

Are there any tactics to promote gender equality? Here are some major measures companies should consider:


1. Training

Training should be the priority when addressing the problem of inequality. Be it workshop, course or whatever the format would be, training helps raise awareness, further detecting false behaviors and promoting fair and equitable treatment.


2. Create policies

Company policies is the ground base for employees’ actions. A good policy including reward and punishment would encourage people to go beyond gender stereotypes. This way, we recognize the effort and contribution of each individual regardless of their genders.


3. Establish the role model(s)

One of the reasons for gender inequality is the lack of female role models in the industry on a macro level and in the company on a micro level. Shine spotlight on successful women, and colleagues would appreciate them more.


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