March is Women’s History Month and I thought it would be a good time to discuss how you can let the women you work with know you value and respect them. 

ETS was founded by a woman, my mom, Hope Coryer almost 40 years ago. Today, ETS is still 100% woman owned and we are proud of our history as a strong advocate for women in the workforce.  

What can you do to show the women you work with are valued? Here are a few suggestions:

Equal Pay for Equal Work
58 years on from the Equal Pay Act and we’re still talking about this. The gender pay gap is still very much alive, and it’s particularly brutal for women of color. Neither race nor gender should have any bearing on what someone earns. Each year there is a designated Equal Pay Day which symbolizes how far into the year women must work to equal what men earned the previous year. Be an advocate for equal pay in your work place and Wear RED on Equal Pay Day (March 24, 2021) to symbolize how far women and minorities are “in the red” with their pay!

Promote Women
Multiple studies prove that companies with a diverse workforce not only have a more varied skill set, but are also more lucrative. And yet, female representation is still a long way from even. Examine your own company structure: if you don’t have any women represented at managerial level, you need to seriously reconsider your business model.

Check your Biases
Navigating the gendered norms of leadership can be a minefield for women – having to straddle the balance between being warm and approachable but also tough and competent is just one example. Think about how your management style affects women, from your hiring policies to team building and office dress codes.

Challenge the “Likeability Penalty”
Success and likeability are positively correlated for men and negatively correlated for women. When a man is successful, his peers often like him more; when a woman is successful, both men and women often like her less. This trade-off between success and likeability creates a double bind for women. If a woman is competent, she does not seem nice enough, but if a woman seems really nice, she is considered less competent. This can have a big impact on a woman’s career. Ask yourself: Who are you more likely to support and promote, the man with high marks across the board or the woman who has equally high marks but is just not as well liked?

What is your company doing to support the growth of the women in your business’ workforce?