Attitude towards gender roles – have we regressed or improved?

Posted around 9 months ago •

February 13, 2023

When the World Economic Forum published the Global Gender Gap Report in 2006, it pushed the focus on gender disparity, meaning Government policy makers across the world were finally benchmarked on how they treated their male and female populations.

The gender pay gap is perhaps the most universally cited example of gender inequality in the workplace.

Findings of the UN Women 20-country study show attitudes towards gender roles have deteriorated amid COVID-19 as outdated social norms and stereotypes continue to hold society back from reaching gender equality.

According to McKinsey and Company, women make up 39 per cent of the global workforce but account for 54 per cent of overall job losses.

It goes without saying that there needs to be a seismic shift in attitudes towards women’s roles in the workplace.

Businesses striving for gender equity in the workplace need to rethink systems and challenge assumptions in order to create an organisational culture that respects and acknowledges both genders.

Equity is a systemic issue and, in order to make lasting change towards greater gender equity in the workplace, it requires all stakeholders, including male colleagues. Without the input of our male colleagues, we are unlikely to truly reach gender equity to be on board.

Women can bring diverse perspectives. Their leadership can drive change for innovation and collaboration within the work environment. Again, this is not to say that either gender is better but it’s fact that more diverse groups involving both genders make better decisions.

It is evident that businesses are advancing for women and there is a continued focus to promote gender diversity. According to the CBI and Pertemps Employment Trends Survey, around one in five have reported improving gender equality (21%) and ethnic equality (18%) as current priorities.

Together we need to build an inclusive environment, that promotes sustainable employment practices where women’s skills and experiences are equally valued.

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