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Over the years, women have faced discrimination in the business environment. The growing trend has affected women as individuals and also has had a huge effect on the business community at large. Research has shown that most women face discrimination for and for various reasons. Mostly this happens to expectant women and also women who have just delivered. This is evidently depicted as the discrimination has gone up the ladder where you find that women are denied of managerial positions. Women despite having the same academic qualifications they still find it hard to penetrate in these positions (Loveday, 1997). With a keen eye look, discrimination doesn’t stop there as a gap in gender wage broadens in the business community. This article will focus on the problems women find in the workplaces and how various countries are trying to curb discrimination in the workplaces with reference to various articles and publications.
Through research from various publications and articles, women’s discrimination is alive and exists in the corporate world. The bizarre predicament is gradually changing as the world is dynamic. According to research, women have come out in public admitting that they face these hitches and they sometimes are forced to let go of their jobs rendering them jobless and this has been perceived for their lack of ambition in the business world (Abrams, 1989). These have forced women to come together and create organizations that fight for their rights and even come up with national goals that try and pursue women to stick in business and fight for their positions regardless of the various discriminations that they endure in the business world. Gender discrimination is attributed to most of the problems women face and has brought negative outcomes in the following ways.
Women have found it difficult to get employed despite having exemplary academic qualifications. After a well-done research and critical analysis, numbers show that the number of the education level of women has shot up to 63% compared to that of their male counterparts which are trailing behind by 9% worldwide. However, the employment index does not reflect this as women are trailing when it comes to their employability. Even with economic recovery some countries are still not been hesitant to employ women. Some companies have a trend that the company’s clients are more comfortable dealing with men rather than women limiting women participation in the labor force. Women have likened the search of a job to a job itself since it’s a struggle to find a vacancy for the mere fact one is a woman.
Different employers are forced to consider the fact that a woman may want to have a family along with her employment tenure and this has resulted to formulations of law within the companies and even in the state level. Pregnant women do not risk being fired but also find themselves being mistreated by employers. Lack of maternity leaves them with no option but work through the sensitive period which leads them to psychological problems and also bears the risk of losing the pregnancy. Not only does the lack of maternity leave deteriorates the working productivity of the company but also puts their lives at stake (Vogel, 1993). Various cases have emerged whereby their workmates take advantage and bestow the pregnant women with insults. The discrimination has made female workers weigh in between family and employment despite the enactment of laws by governing bodies protecting the rights of expectant female employees. Though the laws are formulated the discrimination has not stopped as many women find themselves out in the cold in terms of decision making to an extent of being fired.
According to the 1964 Civil Rights Act, sexual harassment is regarded as a sexual discrimination form. One- quarter of women have reported experiences of sexual harassment in their places of employment. Physical or verbal behavior, sexual favors, and sexual amelioration are all considered to be forms of sexual harassment if in any way compliance or refusal of this conduct has an impact on the person’s employment. Derogatory terms are also taken to be a form of sexual harassment since a person’s rights are infringed (Clark, 1991). Women often experience sexual harassment as they seek for promotions or employment. The terms and conditions to get hired or promoted are often sexual since most of Human Resource Managers are male. The risk of sexual harassment spreads across the board and mostly depends on the environment one is working in, the hours one is subjected to work and also the attitude of colleagues. The indecorous behavior negatively affects the female employees and employers as well in various ways. The female employee’s rate of absenteeism increases leading to low productivity in the company. The female employees work rate decreases notably, they face psychological torture and also quit jobs indefinitely which leaves them unemployed.
According to the Equal Pay Act it makes it against the law to discriminate on sex basis when it comes to wage payment. The law states are of the opinion that any form of compensation e.g. salary, vacations or even life insurance should be equally distributed when it comes to both sexes. In a similar establishment, equal payment is demanded both genders. What entails of the job is what matter most is the determining factor to one’s payment (Lambert, 2004). The Act demands equal pay for women if at all the same amount of skill is required, same effort applied, same responsibility accorded and same working hours spent. Women have proved to be more efficient than men although they earn fewer wages than men. According to critical research done by the PWC, the Gender Wage Gap, 2003-2013, it showed that most countries still face the problem. In countries like Ireland and Australia, the gap increased showing once again that even in developed countries the problem is still present. Women earn less than men even with them having better education and longer experience which is a clear way display that women are discriminated when it comes to wages and salaries.
Women face stern competition from male counterparts that would do anything to attain the high positions in a company. The leadership positions have always been perceived to be for the male and this has led to women lacking the confidence in themselves as they lack role models in leading positions. Even with international experiences, women have little access to the positions that the male dominate even with no international experiences. This has led to women contentment of the lower positions and thus the lack of role models for the younger female generation.
The various predicaments have led to women standing up for themselves to fight against discrimination. Not only have women created organizations to fight for their rights but have also influenced their male counterparts to stand by and with them. The male has found it reasonable to stand for women as they deserve equality in their companies. To try and change all these organizations and leaders should make steps to eradicate the problem permanently (Gregory, 2003). The leaders should exhibit leadership skills that encourage women to fill up any existing positions and non-existing ones. By encouraging women, leaders demonstrate top-notch leadership which will affect the global workforce. Accountability and empowerment should be part of a company’s strategy so that women will find it possible to involve and engage in decision processes of a company or any organization. Psychological safety of women should be highly protected which helps them feel more cared for hence reciprocating the care with hard work which will help the company increase its productivity as a whole.
The company should never discredit women’s leader’s effort and effectiveness hence making the women more comfortable and more responsible which will result to women more women getting uplifted mentally thus creating role models for the next generation which is more important for the growth of the state. To curb issues of sexual harassment the company should create a transparent system where reporting of cases is made easy and comfortable at all levels. Also, sexual education should be highly considered to prevent occurrences of the type happening (Snizek, 1992). Training of managers in any company or organization should of priority as it helps bring an insight in them hence diversification of skills in a workplace is observed and the benefits accorded with diversification are well deserved.
The legal framework and the policies that it provides cannot be sufficient in curbing the predicaments at workplaces that the women experience and face in their workplace. Change is inevitable in the situation and can only happen when the entire fraternity has a change in comprehensive attitude and also in the compliance level (Dyck, 1999). The predicaments that the women experience should be curtailed if the men and women are to be at per status wise. Equality cannot be achieved if women will be still under the mercies of men and under the pressure of discrimination from every side. Even with the presence of the law formulated to specifically to look out for the women in their workplaces, implementing them has not been fully adhered to which makes it hard for women to earn equality and also to eradicate crimes that come along with discrimination. Not only with the help of the organizations that are purposely built to curb gender discrimination, but by the building and maintaining of ethical values that should be safeguarded to restore glory to a woman.
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