Rana El Zaghir
What is gender inequality? Why is it still an issue to this day? Gender inequality is known as the social process by which men and women are not treated equally. Gender inequality has been around for many centuries, it is still the same issue where men think that women aren’t capable of doing what they can do and they are superior to them.
It was common knowledge before to think that a woman has no place in an office because she lacked the education needed, but now almost every female has access to education and can provide for themselves. A woman is now more than capable of doing a man’s job, but they are still not given the chance to show everyone what they are capable of.
To begin with, women within the workplace should be equal to their male colleagues and it is important to bring gender balance in decision-making processes, leadership roles, and the strategic parts of the business. Women are capable of bringing more to the workplace but they aren’t given the opportunity. It has been found in the Pew Research Center Survey, that
“Young women are starting their careers better educated than their male counterparts”
Before, one of the issues was that women weren’t as educated as to the men so they weren’t able to work, but now they are receiving the same education and more. The perspective issue of this is that women are viewed as caring and nurturing souls that don’t have the killer instinct that is needed in the business world. Although many studies have shown that when a woman is in a senior position, the company becomes more profitable.
In addition, different surveys have shown us that with women in charge of different factors in the workplace, there is an increase in productivity. Based on one survey finding, 31% think that a woman would do a better job in running a retail chain, while the men only got 6%. In healthcare, 19% think that a woman as the hospital’s manager is the better choice and less than half of that percentage, think that men would be the better fit. There are only 23 out of 239 VC – backed unicorns across the world that has female founders. There are only 4% of the US fortune 500 companies have female CEOs, so women are underrepresented in CEO positions.
However, women of color have it even worse because only 4% of them hold a C-suite role in US companies. In the 2018 women in the workplace study, it is shown that for every 100 men who are promoted to the managerial level, only 79 women are promoted. If you look into it more closely, only 60 black women are promoted which is almost half of the males. Statistically speaking, only 40% of companies in the US are owned by women and 40% of worldwide businesses have zero women in senior management roles. Also, women that are in the workplace, make a higher salary than they did in the past but they still make less than a man. This is because for every dollar a man makes, a woman earns 80 cents.
The problem with these companies is that they expect the women to be available all the time which is unrealistic because they still need to balance between work and family since that also relies on the women. A man can be there all the time because they don’t hold the same responsibility as these women, all they have to do is be at work and do their job whereas a woman needs to do her job while taking care of her household and almost do everything around her home. Another issue is the stereotype that is perceived of women, such as the idea that it is their job to be the caregiver or how women are too sensitive to be able to handle the pressure of leadership.
Both are nonsense because a woman is more than capable of handling a business and it is not just her job to take care of the household. A great example of a woman in power would be Angela Dorothea Merkel, who is a German politician that has been the chancellor of Germany since 2005. Merkel served as a leader of the opposition from 2002 to 2005 and as a leader of the Christian Democratic Union from 2000 to 2018. She is known as the first female chancellor of Germany and she has been widely described as the de facto leader of the European Union, the most powerful woman in the world, and by many commentators as the “leader of the free world”. She has been capable of making a great difference and making a name for herself because she was allowed to do so.
In conclusion, women have shown that they can do everything a man can do, but the stereotypes and different perspectives, still don’t see women taking a senior position or owning their own companies. It seems that no matter how hard a woman works and how much she tries to blaze a way for others to follow, the fact remains that there is a glass ceiling in the workplace for women. Females have been known to manage better, be more productive and employ more people when they are in charge, but somehow men still don’t see them as anything other than a person who shouldn’t be in the workplace and should be taking care of her household.
It is just as when Frances McDormand was accepting her Oscar for best actress and said that
“Women have ideas and, to put these ideas into action, they need a seat at the table”.
Women are more powerful than many people would like to think, but they aren’t given the chance to show people because they don’t have a “seat at the table”. Hopefully, in the future, the glass ceiling will no longer be there, and women are given more equal opportunities as men.
Brinton, M. (2014). Gender inequality and women in the workplace. Harvard Summer School. Retrieved from https://blog.dce.harvard.edu/summer/gender-inequality-women-workplace
Gaille, B. (2017). 37 gender inequality in the workplace statistics. Retrieved from https://brandongaille.com/35-gender-inequality-in-the-workplace-statistics/
Pavlou, C. (n.d.). Gender inequality in the workplace: A lack of women in leadership. Workable. Retrieved from https://resources.workable.com/stories-and-insights/gender-inequality-in-the-workplace