31 Mar Creating Equity for Women in the Workplace: Ways to Support Women
Is it estimated that over 1 million women left the US workforce from Feb 2020 to Sept 2022. While their reasons for leaving vary, now, more than ever there is a need to ensure that women are given equal opportunities and proper resources to succeed in the workplace. It’s important
As an agency driven by mostly women, we think it’s essential to prioritize a workplace culture that is fair, equitable, and supportive for women. Here are things we’ve done to reinforce this culture.
Women’s History in the Workplace
Persistent pay gaps, limited roles and opportunities for advancement, and discrimination have marked women’s history in the workplace. Despite some progress over time, these issues remain prevalent today. Women are still paid less than men for similar work and continue to be underrepresented in leadership positions. In addition, they often face barriers such as sexual harassment or unequal access to resources that can impede their success.
It is clear that there is a need for meaningful initiatives aimed at creating an equitable workplace environment where all employees—regardless of gender identity—can thrive.
5 Ways to create an impactful workplace environment to promote Equity for Women
Giving value to women by providing an impactful workplace environment is an essential step in creating a more equitable society. This includes things like equal pay, leadership roles, mental health breaks, and family-friendly policies such as maternity leaves and breastfeeding consideration. It is important not just to provide these resources but also prioritizes them in order to create meaningful change.
Creating an equitable workplace environment does not happen overnight or in isolation. It requires effective communication, a collaboration between internal teams, and a systemic approach to change.
While this is not a comprehensive list, here are some ways we have taken action to make sure that our workplace culture is equitable and empowering for women, and we think can help agencies create an impactful workplace environment for women too.
1. Everyone has a voice, but especially women
We make space for varying perspectives of everyone on our team, but the breadth and depth of backgrounds and experiences as mothers, daughters, and wives, means the women on our staff have unique and insightful perspectives. And all of these are heard.
Women are involved in everything from benefits and perk offerings to providing input and insights for client work. Our team understands that everyone is equally respected and heard, regardless of their title, rank, or age.
“The hardest lessons I’ve learned all seem to stem from not speaking up.”
We make it clear that everyone’s voice matters, and that everyone can speak up. We believe in cultivating a culture of openness and transparency, where anyone can express their ideas openly, without judgement. This comment on a LinkedIn post by Sara T. from our content team says it best, “Don’t be afraid to be honest when those moments strike because your input could be part of a bigger solution, allow positive outcomes to follow, or prevent a team fallout.”
2. Equal Pay for Equal Work
Our leadership team is primarily women; they set the standard for how compensation gets distributed across the agency. Therefore, the balance of equitable pay amongst our staff is not driven by antiquated constructs of how salaries are defined. To put it short, everyone is paid equally for the work that they do.
But for women out there who feel like they are deprived of how they should be paid, I say don’t be afraid to fight for your value, ask for what you deserve.
3. Trust them with leadership roles
As previously mentioned, our leadership team is primarily made up of women; we are also a certified women-owned business. From day one, women have been at the heart of establishing Ignite Social Media as a reputable business. Trusting their instincts is key to how they work to develop others in the agency and to the growth of our business.
Moreover, investing in your people makes quite a difference in the overall development of everyone. Women are often overlooked for leadership roles, so it’s important to take a step back and assess potential leaders who can make good decisions when leading teams.
Trust women with the work, you’ll be surprised at the potential of what they can bring to the table.
4. Offer mentorship and sponsorship
Good mentors come in all shapes, sizes, and genders. We have seen women mentoring other women, and that’s great, but it’s also important to broaden the world of mentorship for women.
At Ignite, we have hired outside coaches for our team — some have been women, others men. This initiative allows for broader perspectives and gives our team access to different ways of thinking about their own development and growth. From providing career advice to discussing industry trends — this type of support can go a long way in helping women find their voice, take control of their careers, and set new standards for success.
Sponsorship is directly connected to an individual’s ascent in their career, but critical for women. Based on the number of senior leaders and managers at our company, or the number of former women staffers who have gone on to hold significant roles outside of Ignite, the idea of someone paving the way and opening a door for the next women is core to how we operate.
We don’t just talk the talk when it comes to the growth and development of women. We are genuinely advocating for it.
5. The Perks Matter
While we don’t have a set of perks specific to women, of those we offer many of them certainly benefit the women on our staff. Our special pamper, personal, health, and fitness ‘Pick A Perk’ program offers staff an allowance towards services that not only benefit them, but also their families. The selection of perks was culled from input and vetting by women staffers—which is why many of them directly support physical and mental health wellness. Things like yoga classes, massages, flight upgrades and streaming services work to ease burdens that some people take for granted.
We are committed to ensuring that our team is supported both financially and emotionally. We know the importance of taking care of ourselves to stay productive in our work, so why not give everyone the opportunity to do just that?
From every corner of the world, it’s clear that there is still a fight for gender equality in the workplace. It’s important more than ever to take part in creating a safe and equitable environment to ensure that every person, especially women, has the same opportunity to succeed.
At Ignite, we are actively promoting equity for women in the workplace by implementing specific policies and practices to fight gender inequality. We hope these initiatives will not only help bridge the gap between men and women but also inspire other organizations to do the same. Together, we can create a culture of respect and inclusivity for all.
Our commitment is to be better allies for women and ensure that their voices are heard and respected without judgment. We strive to be part of the change — making sure that equity for women in the workplace is not just a conversation but an actual reality. With small steps and a lot of dedication, we can make that happen.
Cheers to you, woman. Happy Women’s Month! 🌸
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