Gender Inequality at the Workplace: Causes and Solutions
Gender inequality is viewed as a complex phenomenon that occurs in organizations and various businesses. The most harmful inequalities that women face are related to human resources practice as it deals with training, promotion opportunities, and payment. The nature of gender discrimination is in the interrelation of processes, structures, and practices in the organization that may contribute to inequality due to company policy, climate, and culture. It is believed that decision-making in many organizations is influenced by benevolent or hostile sexism, which involves positive or negative stereotypes about females. Both forms of sexism can contribute to gender discrimination in the workplace and HR practices. It is stated that “agentic women, who are high in competence, will be discriminated against because of competition; whereas, pregnant women and mothers, who are low in competence, will be discriminated against because of a perceived lack of deservingness.” Thus, these two forms of bias have the same effect on a female career.
The underrepresentation of female managers at higher levels also causes fewer opportunities for promotion for women when compared with men. Female workers are given fewer challenges and training that might help them obtain the necessary skills for promotion. Still, even in a female-dominant organization, men a more likely to get a key leadership role.
To reduce gender discrimination and make work outcomes more equal, it is advised to improve HR practice and utilize gender equality programs in the organizations. HR policy should be more family-friendly and have more initiatives to increase recruit diversity. The organizations should also focus on improving HR and organizational decision-making practices related to females to give them more opportunities for training and work challenges. It should be emphasized that gender discrimination is regarded as something that has happened in the past. Therefore, many initiatives and gender equality programs are resisted because of a feeling of competition experienced by men.