Gender discrimination is holding women back from the very start of their careers, long before they reach the supposed ‘glass ceiling’, says Mary-Rose Lines, who explains what HR can do to help women progress.
Make processes clear and open
At the first level of management there are 28% more men than women receiving specialist development through high potential groups or talent pools. At executive level, this rises to 50% more men. Realistically, achieving gender parity is not just slow but impossible if organisations continue to select disproportionately more males for the high-potential programs that are the feeder pool for senior leadership. Placing women in high-level positions to satisfy affirmative action quotas or organisations policies without first providing them with the training and experiences they need to be successful sets them up for failure. Women also receive less support than men during career transition such as promotions or new roles.