International Women’s Day is a day to reflect on the strides that have been made, as well as the inequalities that are still to be resolved.
This week in the office, we’ve asked the question:
“How much progress do you think we have made in terms of equality and diversity for women in the workplace?”
Here are some of their answers:
Personally speaking, it has come a long way! Recart acknowledge the fact that being a working parent there is often a need to be flexible with working hours. I am fully supported when I have needed to take time away from the office to attend things at my daughter’s school – events that were too important to me to miss. I am actively encouraged to ensure I attend the meetings, plays, special award assemblies.
I think having a balanced team of men and women bring more depth and understanding to a team.
We have come such a long way in recent years. It’s great to see so many issues around gender equality being discussed and raised. One of the most important benefits of having a day like International Women’s Day is that it is so encouraging for a young woman like me to see that progress is being made and that there are people out their being champions for gender equality.
I think a good starting place for organisations looking to make progress, is to educate employees on unconscious bias. This is something that both genders still experience on a daily basis, and can feed to people’s stereotypes of how capable a person will be of doing a certain job or task.
In terms of Recart, I think the diversity and equality is as good as it gets.
We have a lot of brilliant people here, both female and male. We focus so much on the core values, which means we don’t take into play anyone’s gender, nationality, ethnicity etc. when hiring someone. It focuses on personality and characteristics, which is what’s important.
I think the only way we will truly achieve full equality is when each sex is given the opportunities and access to industries and sectors equally through education, and companies taking responsibility to actively support men and women taking non-traditional career options, to ultimately disassociate gender stereotypes with all jobs.
I think that progression has been delayed due to a lack of cost effective childcare provision in the UK. It is a persistent issue in gender equality. Many women who have children and are only able return to the workplace arena when their children are at school age effectively knock them back 5 -7 years in their career path.
In addition, I think some employers will still make hiring decisions based on the fact that women may take time due to childcare and the duties associated with that. Something that they would not assume of a male candidate (despite the fact that this is also something that impacts men in the workplace).
I think we are lucky here at Recart to be respected as much as our male counterparts. I feel valued here and appreciate that my role as a mother is also respected equally. That is a huge issue that I feel holds women back in working roles, the choice between being a mum/employee. I know that our MD is passionate about ensuring the women here don’t feel that is a conflict, and it works. Many places don’t have that!
However, I feel like while the drive on ‘women in…’ roles is a big push at the moment true equality will be when it isn’t ‘women in geology’ but just a geologist (likewise for other roles).
Equality will be when both women and men have the same opportunities and access to achieve anything they want in their careers. The future should be ‘Equality and Respect’ across the board.
I feel like feminism has now become a bit of a dirty word, as there are lot of stigmatisms attached to it. Sometimes this can prevent women from speaking their mind due to the negative associations with being a feminist, but we should be challenging people’s preconceptions on this. We should be challenging the norm, and embrace the promotion of equality and diversity.
I hope that we progress enough that my future daughter won’t have to worry about discrimination in the workplace. Though I believe a lot of changes have been made, that we still have a long way to go.