Does Increasing Female Leadership Help Reduce Gender Bias in the Workplace?

Gender Bias in the workplaceGender bias and inequality in the workplace is something we’d like to think of as a thing of the past. In reality, that isn’t the case. This remains a significant issue today.

Every company should certainly make an effort to eliminate gender bias and inequality. Not only is this the right thing to do, but making a deliberate effort towards the same can help you attract and retain top talent.

Towards this end, there are several approaches a company can take. One such approach is by increasing female leadership in the following one or more of the ways.

1. Implementing a Gender-Neutral Recruitment Process

Review your entire recruitment process to eliminate any loopholes that would otherwise encourage gender bias. This starts with the language used in the job description when putting out job ads.

Indeed, some words commonly used in job descriptions have masculine connotations, which may put off women from applying for the advertised positions. “Competitive” is one such word; another is “rock-star” On the other hand, words such as “co-operation” and “collaboration” tend to attract women more.

The bottom line remains that you should be sure to inquisitively review your job postings and remove any gender-charged phrases, both masculine and feminine.

The next step is to ensure you standardize interviews and implement blind evaluation processes. Blind evaluation processes, such as neuroscientific tests, help to remove any bias from the recruitment process.

2. Support Women into Senior Roles

Big names across different industries have set gender targets. These companies break down targets by function and business lines. This means that the company sets out a certain number of seats on the senior management board for women and finds the most qualified women to fill these roles.

Of course, like men, all these women in senior positions should have clearly defined roles, and their performance gauged against set targets and required milestones. They should be held accountable for meeting these targets just like anyone else.

3. Actively Encourage Women to Progress

Ensure your female employees are applying for advertised promotions and asking for pay raises. Some companies have made a point of ensuring that line managers check if the high-potential women in their team have applied for these positions. If not, the line managers have a responsibility to find out why that is the case.

Actively encouraging it will get more women to apply for positions of progress. Line managers should make a point of doing follow-ups to ensure that more women apply, provided they are a good fit for the advertised positions.

4. Establishing Mentorship Programs

It isn’t enough to just encourage women at your workplace to apply for higher-paying and more senior roles. It’s best to provide the much-needed guidance and mentorship. And the higher up in the organization you are, the more widespread will be your effect.

Indeed, a solid mentorship program will help to diversify the work hierarchy. These programs give women in your organization the organizational knowledge, skills, and networks to be able to climb the corporate ladder.

Through these programs, you will be pairing the women in your organization with other women, or even men, who can impart to them the knowledge required to get to that promotion or power the transition to the next step.

Beyond Leadership

As highlighted, you can bridge gender inequality at the workplace by encouraging and increasing female leadership. In addition to encouraging more women to fill senior positions or positions of leadership in the organization, you will do well to review salaries and standardize pay. This will help bridge any gender pay gaps. With total compensation reports, you can show potential employees and recruits the total package you offer, which will, in turn, help your talent recruiting and retention offers.

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