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Gender Inequality in Work Place

(S. Devi, Head, Department of Social Work, Mohamed Sathak College of Arts &Science)

Gender discrimination continues to be an enormous problem within Indian society.


Gender discrimination is the unfair treatment of a person because of gender. It affects both men
and women .Traditional patriarchal norms have relegated women to secondary status within the
household and workplace. This drastically affects women's health, financial status, education,
and political involvement. Women are commonly married young, quickly become mothers, and
are then burdened by stringent domestic and financial responsibilities. Women still face a gender
bias especially in the workforce. It is apparent in work situations where one gender is given
preferential treatment or one gender receives less pay or job responsibilities because of gender
bias and unfair stereotype. Despite the fact that Women continue to flood into the workforce and
break down gender barriers, they also continue to be under-represented in senior roles. It is
widely accepted fact that women earn less. Why is this happening? If there is a glass ceiling
what can women do to become a successful top level executive with competitive compensation.
These areas will be discussed in this paper.
Key words: Gender equality, gender bias, glass ceiling and equal employment

Gender Inequality in Work Place


(S. Devi, Head, Department of Social Work, Mohamed Sathak College of Arts &Science, e-mailmail4devi@yahoo.com)

Introduction:
Gender inequality is amongst us all in any given society. Gender comes into play along
with a number of different aspects such as sex, gender and gender roles. Each of these aspects
play a significant part when speaking of the different social problems. This is a gender inequality
that affects mainly the women. Gender Inequality affects in the workplace by reason of family
impact on gender roles, gender inequality plays a big part in the workplace. Gender inequality is
mainly noticed in the work place due to the role that is embedded into our society pertaining to
males and female gender, women are the largest minority, due to these gender inequalities
prevails in the work force.
In the days which the world just hit another century, the 21st, it is very disappointing to
know that people cannot freely chose their jobs and do not have same opportunities with any
other people just because of their gender. Gender bias is one of the most common problems in
the workplace. It is easy observe the payment inequalities as well as inequalities in hiring and
promoting. This enforcement is due to the fact that throughout the history women's place has
always been considered as home .They knows that men do not want work with them. Men, at
work, act like women are not there and in a way exclude them from the social aspect of work. ...
They do not tell their problems about gender bias or inequalities since they do not want their
professional performance to be questioned.
Workplace Gender Bias
In workforce, gender bias is observed in many different forms and degrees. With respect
to traditional jobs versus non-traditional jobs, women are often relegated to low-paying, clerical
and administrative jobs than men. Diversity training can be somewhat effective; however, there

must first be an acknowledgement of the presence of gender bias as well as a commitment to


eliminating sex discrimination in the workplace.. Hold employees and managers accountable for
playing their part in achieving a workplace free from discrimination.
Impact of Gender discrimination:
According to TNS Research Surveys, 68 percent of women surveyed believe gender
discrimination exists in the workplace. The Equal Pay Act of 1963 ended the practice of paying
men more than women when performing the same jobs and duties. In 1964, the Civil Rights Act
extended this protection to other minorities. Despite these protections, many women still feel
gender-based discrimination is a problem in some businesses.
Lost Productivity
Victims of gender discrimination lose motivation and morale necessary to perform their
jobs effectively. According to a report written by Jodi L. Jacobson of the WorldWatch Institute,
gender bias also leads to a loss in productivity. Things that may lead to this loss of morale and
motivation could include jokes about an employees gender that imply inferiority, offensive jokes
of a suggestive or sexual nature and jokes implying that an employees work is sub-par due to his
or her gender. Law prohibits this type of workplace harassment, whether by superiors or
coworkers.
Promotions
Stereotypical views regarding gender can cause supervisors to engage in the illegal
practice of passing a person over for promotion due to gender. While this can happen to both
genders, supervisors most often pass over women for promotion due to preconceived notions
about their roles and abilities.. Supervisors may pass over qualified males for promotions in
industries that employ a high percentage of women compared to men, such as teaching positions
or those industries involving care of children.

Family Responsibilities
Women who have young children at home may experience push-back when interviewing due to
family responsibilities. Although law prohibits a prospective employer from asking about family
responsibility outright, it often comes out during the interview process anyway. This may
provoke the hiring manager to pass over a qualified female candidate if he feels she will be torn
between her home and job responsibilities. He then may choose to give her less responsibility or
assign menial tasks to her that do not fit her job description. Although illegal, this practice still
exists in offices today.
Destruction
Those discriminated against may feel such strong resentment and loss of self worth that they
resort to destruction as a way to get back at the discriminatory employer or coworkers.
Destructiveness may manifest itself as physical violence against others, destruction of property
or propagation of malicious rumors about people in the company and the company itself.
Promoting Gender Equality
Many companies are undertaking various strategies to promote gender equality that include:
Getting buy-in from the top. No major cultural shift will happen unless senior leaders want it
to happen. Their endorsement will ensure more women are included in succession planning,
talent management, management programs, and the boardroom.
Creating inclusive work environments. For the last decade, young women have been
encouraged to enter male-dominated fieldsengineering and high technology in particular.
Many highly educated young women responded only to leave the fields several years later,
never to return. A Harvard Business Review study from 2008 found that as many as 50 percent
of women working in science, engineering and technology will, over time, leave because of a
hostile male culture, a sense of isolation and lack of a clear career path. An updated study in
2014 found nothing had changed. To attract and retain talented workers of both genders and all
backgrounds, companies must not only say theyre inclusive, they must be inclusive.

Diversity training.
Employees, middle managers, and senior leaders of! both genders should be educated about the
business advantages of gender equality. Catalyst found that the higher mens awareness of gender
inequality, and the business need to improve it, the more they supported it. Training can also help
dispel gender stereotypes and biases.
Identifying talent and offering leadership programs.
To get more women into the talent pipeline, strategies and action plans that are customized
for a companys culture and business objectives need to be created. Leadership programs could
include formal learning sessions, coaching by executives, advisory forums, workshops, and peer
networking.
Providing mentorship and coaching.
Strong, successful female leaders can inspire and help recruit ambitious young women. Coaching
by successful male executives is also helpful. Providing formal mentorship to female employees
demonstrates a companys commitment to gender equality and sends a message of instilling this
value throughout the business.
Embracing career flexibility.
Women are more likely to have non-linear career paths, taking time off for maternity leaves, or
choosing jobs that dont take them away from home for long periods. Senior management
needs to be understanding of womens needs and chosen career paths.
Measuring progress.
Reasonable and achievable targets need to be set and progress needs to be monitored using
metrics.This allows continual improvements to be made throughout the organization and
strategiesadapted to meet changing business and employee needs.

Conclusion:
In conclusion, more women than ever are in the workplace. Women have made enormous
advancements in education and professionally especially over the last 20 years. This has begun to
change the workplace for the better. We also have more women owned businesses than ever
before. Our society still has some long standing views of women as the lesser sex and their place
being in the home but that is on its way to being debunked. Corporations need to recognize the
differences in males and females and use it to the betterment of the organization. Women also
need to understand the differences and continue working to equality in pay and benefits, while
realizing the reasons males often earn more.
Over the past few decades, organizations in most sectors have done an admirable job of
embracing cultural diversity and gender equality. Today this is reflected in the ranks of junior and
middle management.. At a time when consumers especially younger consumers expect
greater corporate accountability, a lack of diversity at the executive level can have a serious
impact on a companys reputation, market share, and future growth. Businesses that continue to
ignore gender equality do so at their own peril.
References:

Persson, I. and Jonung, C., Womens work and wages, London, Routledge, 1998.
Rees, T., Mainstreaming equality in the European Union, London, Routledge, 1998.
Shapiro, G., A gender analysis of the career progression of IT managers, (doctorate
thesis), University of
Brighton, 1997
Wajcman, J., Feminism confronts technology, Philadelphia, Penn State Press, 1991.