How to Support Women at Work

Supporting women at work is crucial for the wellness of all employees AND performance of organizations.

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Last week, we talked about women leaders, the discrimination they face, and their positive impact. However, we all know that women as a whole face discrimination and unique challenges in the workplace. We lack important benefits for women, growth opportunities, and adequate representation in a variety of industries. In addition, women have left the workforce at a staggering rate during the pandemic, creating greater inequity than before it. Below, we compile a variety of content to help you and your organizations support women at work.

Supporting Pregnancy and Motherhood

Parental leave in the U.S. does not compare to what is legally required in a lot of other countries. We know that this lack of leave and support disproportionately hurts women and their careers. To learn more about how to support pregnant coworkers and mothers, check out our previous content here:

Don’t forget your pregnant coworkers are still the amazing workers you knew before! Support them as they need it – do not make assumptions!

Supporting Women at Work Broadly

Not all women at work have children or traditional families. Thus, while we know supporting pregnancy and motherhood can have a major impact on equity, it is not the only solution. Women at work deal with a variety of challenges. For example, some face different expectations because they do not have children. In addition, many deal with sexual harassment at work. And, others take on most of the housework in the office. To learn more, check out our previous content on a few of these topics:

It’s also important to remember that women at work are individuals too! Support should be individualized to their needs.

Learning and Allyship

Finally, in order for us to effectively support women at work, we need to understand the basics of their experience and bias. Thus, diversity, equity, and inclusion training is a must! While we know many companies already do this, few do it really well. A really strong program needs to change people’s behaviors and help them recognize their biases and blindspots.

Further, this type of training can be the first step toward allyship. Women and other discriminated groups cannot make the changes alone. We need to help and support each other. Thus, we broke down the basics of allyship in this previous article.

In sum, supporting women at work is crucial for their wellness. But, it’s also important for the wellness of all employees and performance of organizations. We encourage you to reflect on what you can do to make an impact. How can you be an ally to women and/or support other women at work?

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