When looking at factors contributing to the gender wage gap, many note the lack of women in C-Suite and other top leadership positions. The following practices and policies will help decrease gender bias and ensure equal opportunity for advancement.
WHAT YOU CAN DO RIGHT AWAY
Look at the distribution of men and women among projects and high-level responsibilities.
- Check to see if women are afforded the same opportunities as men to show their skills and take on important projects.
- Watch for a disproportionate amount of less glamorous work being given to women. Employ a fair process for assigning these tasks and rotate them after a set time period.
PRACTICES TO ADAPT OVER TIME
Set goals (such as SMART goals) and achievement-based promotions for employees.
- The vast majority of companies already have this in place, but often they are gendered in construction. Conduct a re-evaluation of your performance measures to see if they reflect the traits of those already in power.
- Be specific. Ambiguity and overly- narrow definitions of success amplifies bias.
Take advantage of mentoring programs for women, ensuring a pipeline of qualified women employees when leadership positions open up.
Have your organization accept the Women’s Leadership Institute’s ElevateHER Challenge.
- The ElevateHER Challenge is a non- prescriptive, research based, action plan to help companies transform women’s leadership.
- The ElevateHER Challenge focuses on each of the following areas in order to reap the full benefit of enhancing women’s leadership:
- Increase the percentage of women in senior leadership positions.
- Increase the retention rate of women at all levels of your organization.
- Increase the number of women on your organization’s Board of Directors, extend the influence of women in your industry and encourage women to serve on community and corporate boards.
- Monitor pay by gender and close identified gaps.
- Establish a Leadership Development and/or Mentoring Program for women.
- Urge women to run for public office and give follow-up support.
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“Best Practices Guide for Closing the Gender Wage Gap”