Let's keep working to #BreakTheBias in the workplace all-year-round
The need to help #BreakTheBias in the workplace is not only marked on International Women's Day, but all-year-round.
The Women in the Workplace Report finds 73 per cent of women experience bias at work, but only 22 per cent of employees say they see biased behavior in their organization—and those that do rarely speak up.
In an article for Forbes, Journalist Holly Corbett looks at the different biases that are regularly faced by women in the workplace.
A wide range of workplace inequalities
Holly highlights that, “Biases often come into play when giving feedback, meaning the information we’re delivering may be influenced by prejudices.”
Further inequalities faced include:
- The Motherhood Penalty: According to Holly, the motherhood penalty is real. Gender pay gaps, having children, and inflexibility are some ways mothers are penalized.
- The Broken Rung: Holly looks at how, for every 100 men promoted to managers, only 86 women are promoted. With fewer women promoted into management positions, there is less of a pipeline for women to take leadership roles – this is known as the ‘broken rung.’
- Migroaggressions: As women break the glass ceiling, Holly details some microaggressions that challenge their competence. These include, “being interrupted, hearing comments on their emotional state, or having their judgment questioned, according to the Women in the Workplace 2021 Report,” writes Holly.
Changing workplace culture
Looking forward, Holly concludes her article by highlighting that changing the workplace environment is key.
Rachel Thomas, co-founder & CEO of LeanIn.Org and OptionB.Org says: “Often challenging bias and advocating for women is good for the woman in the moment, and it's actually good for you and how you're seen by your coworkers, regardless of your gender. When employees challenge bias and practice allyship, it inspires others to do the same and sets off a ripple effect that can change the culture of your workplace.”
“You can have all the right policies and programs in place, and that is a great step in the right direction, but the important last mile is changing the culture of your workplace to better support women. That means all employees at every level are engaged to challenge bias, to step in when they see hurtful or undermining behavior, and to go further than that and practice allyship. That is when we truly get to inclusion,” comments Rachel.
Read the article in full.