Absence of Promotion for Women in the Workplace

In the course of time, humanity has come to the idea that equality is the highest human value. A large number of attempts and actions were made to stop the spread of prejudices about the freedom and equality of people. Nevertheless, the modern society still faces numerous cases of gender, age, racial, and religious discrimination. One of the biggest challenges for the community turns to be sexism in the workplace. Gender inequality in organizations affects hiring, training, pay, and promotion spheres. Women are deprived of any chances to obtain leadership and become successful in their career. Lack of opportunities, low socio-economic status, and absence of career promotion evokes psychological stress of women and harm their mental and physical health. The society is highly concerned with the growing problem of sexism in the workplace. Women and social activists all over the world call the governments to act to stop the gender discrimination. Organizations and employers should not make any difference between male and female workers. Equal job opportunities should be provided for representatives of both sexes. The exclusion of women from the management sphere undermines the future of the society, so the reformation of organizational structure and its postulates is essential to provide equal job opportunities for both genders and help female employees to become competitive members of the job market. 

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Problem

Gender discrimination in the workplace has become the biggest concern of the society. The most often targets of sexism in the organizations turn to be women who are more psychologically affected by it. Gender inequality is the most widely spread in human resources and HR-related decision-making. The research, which had been conducted from 1995 to 2000, shows that women constitute only 34% of officials and managers in the American corporations. The situation has not improved significantly since 2000. The top leaders of the organizations create the effect of “glass ceiling” for the female employees by preventing them from advancing to the leadership positions. The assumption that a woman is the threat to the social status of a man is the prime reason for the lack of career opportunities for female workers. What is more, the western research of 1980-2010 years illustrates that “gender discrimination and harassment against women is more likely to happen in the environments dominated by men.” Sexism in the workplace can be realized in numerous ways. Firstly, it is the problem of face time. Women are still considered to be caregivers for their children, so flexible working hours are necessary for them. Nevertheless, employers do not always provide working mothers with flexible schedule, or they apply penalties for those who require it. Another aspect of discrimination in the organizations is gender job segregation. Thus, women do not have any opportunities to cross into other lines of advancement. Personal bias towards women is also one of the prime sources of sexism in the workplace. Managers with hostile attitude towards female employees usually determine organizational rewards, opportunities, and punishments according to their personal beliefs and assumptions. Some of the employers try to do tricks to attract only male employees and not be recognized as sexists. The research demonstrates that almost half of female employees experienced gender harassment in the United States military sphere over the last years. Such results prove that job sexism turns to be a serious threat to the world community. Organizations all over the world give women lower social status and deprive them of chances to develop professionally and perform their work on the highest level.

Gender discrimination in the workplace and lack of the promotion opportunities for women can have a negative and irreversible impact on the modern job market and the society at whole. To start with, the absence of career development and proper working conditions make woman unmotivated and affect their outcome. Female employees understand that there is no connection between their performance at work and job promotion. That is why women perform their duties unwillingly and with no enthusiasm lowering the effectiveness of work of whole organization. What is more, personal life and health of the people, who undergo gender discrimination in the workplace, is also affected. Women become depressed, nervous, and angry at their coworkers. 

Secondly, skeptical and hateful attitudes towards women as specialists “discredit their expert opinions, but give expert men the benefit of the doubt.”   Thus, plenty of crucial and important ideas or conclusions are disregarded and not believed by the society. Various organizations experience crisis since they cannot find proper experts only among men. As a result, thousands of talented and educated female experts cannot perform their work successfully due to reasonless assumptions and prejudices of the community. 

In addition, female employees are forced to choose between their career and children. Since the promotion opportunities for women are considerably lower than for men, mothers have to meet all the requirements of the management of the company even those which affect their family role. In some organizations, women are allowed to have flexible timetable and access to their children, but usually these working mothers are not recommended to have a promotion. Choosing between family and job, women put themselves under the great tension, provide low birth-rate and admit the worsening of their health. 

Furthermore, skepticism and hostile attitude towards women in the job market cause the undervaluation of their work. According to the national study of 1985-2000, women appear to be constantly underpaid at their workplace. Thus, female employees are paid 22% less than men in the same job positions. Consequently, women need to work more hours or to find another job to earn enough money for their living. By working too much to have an average salary, women acquire serious diseases and harm their mental health. 

Moreover, underrepresentation of women in the leading positions in the organization, absence of career opportunities, and hostile working conditions make them mobilize against the sexist employers. Women become hostile, irritated and unfair to the male coworkers. In a result, when a female employee, who earlier underwent gender discrimination in the workplace, gets a promotion, she can display sexist behavior towards her male colleagues.  

Finally, gender discrimination within the organization can harm the success and profit of the corporation itself. Thus, sexist beliefs and assumptions of the company leaders affect the ability of the organization to attract qualified applicants. For example, analyzing the comments of the staff of the company and its gender diversity, potential applicants can form a negative image about the organization. The spread of sexist attitudes in the workplace can also affect the wiliness of customers to buy the products of the company or to cooperate with it. For instance, considering the information about job sexism towards female employees within the organization, women will not agree to contribute to the success of such enterprise. 

Solution

While considering the damaging and humiliating influence of gender discrimination in the workplace on the society, it is crucial to outline strong and effective solutions to the problem. According to Stamarski, only multifaceted approach to the organizational structure can help to stop job sexism. Reforms should affect not only one sphere of the company but reorganize its structure, processes, practices, and mechanisms of decision making. To change the composition of the workplace, leaders should recruit employees from underrepresented groups, namely women. Better promotion opportunities for female workers can be obtained by developing a strong climate for diversity.  

What is more, adoption of family friendly policies will lessen family-work conflict and provide women with a flexible timetable and part-time opportunities. In that way, female and male employees will have equal chances of promotion and successful performance. The introduction of such policies will allow top managers to promote candidates not only by considering their gender or family status but their skills and effectiveness. 

Job analysis can be a good way to reduce gender discrimination in personnel decisions. It will help to identify skills and abilities of the employees depending on their actual knowledge, not on the gender stereotypes. Affirmative Action Programs can also contribute to the elimination of job sexism in recruitment, selection, and promotion spheres. In addition, numerous training and workshops can reduce hostile and sexist beliefs and assumptions among the staff of the company allowing all its workers to have equal opportunities.  

Next, diverse representation on the top of the organization can significantly increase chances of women to get a promotion. Thus, the companies should hire diversity officer who will reengineer all the systems within the company to stop discrimination. The commitment of the leaders to the process of reforming can help to accelerate the procedure and make it more effective. Only the organization with the diverse employee and employer composition can avoid job sexism. 

Evaluation of the Evidence 

The evidence, which is used to present the problem and outline possible solutions to it, is valid, reliable, and without bias. The analysis and description of phenomenon of job sexism in the modern society are supported with data from the scholarly sources and peer-reviewed articles. Thus, the article in the scholarly periodical presents some background and statistical data about the most spread manifestations of job sexism and its status in the modern world. Another peer-reviewed article provides some additional information and facts to describe the development of the problem in the last years. The information provided in the sources is valid and reliable since all the data presented in them are peer reviewed and taken from the authoritative organizations. The sources seem to be not biased, are independent and based only on the facts and statistical data. The authors are extremely moderate in their presentation of the problem and do not give any personal opinion or evaluation of it.

There are several sources that provide statistical data about job sexism in the community. Thus, one of the sources uses the findings of Multi-City Study of Urban Inequality. The article considers statistical data about promotion probabilities and wage increases of both male and female employees. The statistical data of the source states that men have higher promotion rates than women in the same job positions. Expectations of promotion are also higher for male employees. At the same time, rates of received promotion are relatively small for both sexes (less than 10%).  Another peer-reviewed source presents statistical data which denies the glass cliff hypothesis. According to the hypothesis, women are more likely to be promoted to the leaders in case of poor organizational performance, while men are usually promoted with the high performance of the organization. The data illustrates that the rates of promotion of both male and female leaders are almost the same despite any gender differences and performance of the company. The third source provides the statistic data about various aspects of work: gender of employees, ability to have flexible work schedule, opportunities to take maternity/paternity leave. According to its statistics, about 70% of organizations have women in one of the top positions. What is more, there are 50% of companies with women on the board of directors. So, the study shows that despite all the cases of job sexism, female employees still play a significant role in the managing of the organization. The strong point of the sources, used in the research, is that they present cold, independent, and objective description and information about gender discrimination in the workplace. The weak point of the sources is the lack of background information about the problem and history of its development. Although the problem of job sexism is gaining more and more interest among the sociologists and the community members, the finding of the research are still limited to some degree. The prime limitation of the research is caused by the absence of the access to all the corporations and employee database in the country. Difficulty in defining the objective reasons for small number of promotion rate among women is another limitation to the current research. It is almost impossible to identify whether the female employees are not appointed to the leader positions due to the lack of their skills or due to the gender discrimination in the workplace. Yet, there are still areas for future research of the problem. Thus, main reasons for lack of promotion among women in the organizations should be outlined and analyzed. What is more, training and programs to avoid gender discrimination in the workplace should be developed depending on the findings of the research. 

Ethical Outcomes of Solution

Although the reduction of gender discrimination in the workplace is an important and inevitable step for the society, it can cause some negative ethical outcome. Live communication is always a prime condition for, respect, support, and understanding between people. Introduction of the programs into the process will make the process of hiring, selection, and promotion purely automatic. Thus, in some cases where human sympathy is so important, the programs will ignore grief and problems of the applicants or workers. For instance, the program will not take into account that a person has four children who are waiting of the promotion of the talented and enthusiastic parent, but will choose a candidate with the same performance, but who complete few tests better. What is more, excessive concentration on the active involvement of the women to the work process of the organization can affect negatively the feeling of other minorities in the company. 

At the same time, elimination of job sexism brings positive ethical outcomes too. Firstly, every woman deserves to fulfill her primary mission in the world: to become a mother. Introduction of flexible timetables will allow realizing their maternity function and being a proper mother for the child. Secondly, all the humans are equal. The stop of gender discrimination supports the idea of equality. Women will gain the same opportunities and will become the full members of the community. In this way, the right of every human for choice and freedom will be obtained.  

Conclusion

Job sexism appears to be a growing and damaging challenge of the modern society. Women, as well as other minority groups, are discriminated in the working places. The future of the job market and the community is now in danger by growth of inequality between male and female employees. Thus, the top leaders of organizations should reconsider their attitudes towards all the employees and reform the structure, policies and functioning of their companies. The solution of the problem appears to be the introduction of diverse composition of all types of corporations, as well as reorganizing all the spheres within the companies to avoid gender discrimination in the workplace. Otherwise, growing gender discrimination will harm not only the economics of the country but also the integrity of the nation.

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