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Research reveals the top 10 things holding back women at work


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A new study has revealed the top ten issues holding employees, particularly women, back at work and impacting their development and job progression.

Unhelpful stereotypes are listed as the main issue holding back UK employees, while other reasons include unequal pay structure, unconscious bias and a lack of career progression.

The study. carried out by professional training and coaching company Roar Training, concluded that most of the issues highlighted affected both – men and women – but that women proportionately were still more disadvantaged at work.

Image Credit: via Pexels

Women represent just under half of the total labour force in the UK. An academic study done by the University of Cambridge this year revealed that that almost three in four of female employees feel their workplace culture makes it more challenging for them to advance in their careers than men.

The study suggested that attributes displayed by men are often viewed in a different light when presented by women, preventing countless hard-working women getting ahead in their careers.

A prior government study also revealed that women are more likely to be referred to as ‘bitchy’, ‘emotional’ and ‘bossy’ than their male colleagues.

Image Credit: via Pexels

Unconscious bias also means that women are judged differently even before commencing a job. In an interview environment, women tend to be judged on their experience, whereas men are more likely to be judged on their potential. Interviewers are also more to likely question women about their ability to balance and work life. A 2018 survey revealed that a third of young women had been asked in job interviews whether being a mother would impact their ability, despite this being illegal. Nearly half of young working women with children reported that they continued facing maternity discrimination at work.

The gender gap shows no sign of equalising any time soon. Many women are paid considerably less money than their male counterparts, even with the same skillset and experience.

Additionally, women are more likely to be promoted by other women than by men. In a time where women are still underrepresented in boardrooms and CEO positions, it does not come as a surprise that women for one have less chance of promotion, but also have fewer role models to look up to within the own career path. The UK government has recently published a study explaining the benefits of gender-balancing boardrooms.

This is the full list of issues holding UK employees back at work:

  1. Unhelpful stereotypes
  2. Ambition being seen as a bad thing
  3. Differing views on satisfaction between genders
  4. Unconscious bias
  5. Unequal pay structure
  6. Working hours
  7. Company culture
  8. A lack of career progression
  9. Minimal training and support
  10. Lack of role models
Lead image credit: via Pexels

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