This was a quote I heard from the International Diversity Conference that was held in the Isle of Man a couple of years ago, and one that I think encapsulates exactly the era we are in at present.
Regardless of gender, race/ethnicity, sexuality, disability – talent is in every individuals DNA.
Providing women with the tools and development to succeed in their career is essential, and to remove the stigma that some roles are gender dependent or removing the barriers women find in securing that next role. I also think that following the Gender Pay Gap Report being issued by companies with 250+ employees is giving businesses an eye-opener to some unconscious bias, and to allow them to look at why potentially some roles within their organisations are paid differently depending on the gender, albeit likely not having been done on purpose.
Across the diversity piece – individuals find that having role models and mentors really support them in their development plans. An “If they can do it, I can do it” kind of approach.
With job roles, they now need to be less ‘meaty’ and not use as much technical wording as they currently do. Using ‘normal’ language allows more candidates to understand what the role actually requires. Studies show that females who review roles and can’t do one capability / part of the role, will not apply, whereas if a male can do 40% of the role – they will apply.
Making the sure a job description is understood by all is really, really important.
In the modern day, having flexibility and a work/life balance is key, regardless of gender. For example, being a new mother or father and working a condensed week with one day off, allows the colleagues to spend quality time with their family. This then promotes a good work/life balance, but also keeps colleagues engaged – if you have a company that allows this flexibility, colleagues feel more inclined to stay with the organisation and feel cared for.
The technology that we have in the world today, also allows colleagues to work from wherever they like, role permitting, to suit them. Being in an office Monday-Friday 9am-5pm, is a thing of the past and no longer the “norm”.
Levelling the playing field is really key to success – and backing International Women’s Day is something I’m really happy to be championing. Making sure that companies are not doing any of the above as a tick box exercise – but actually doing it for the benefit of the company.
It’s time to celebrate the inspirational women across the globe and #pressforprogress.