How can we get more women into the workforce

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Women entering the workforce are of paramount importance for an organization. They tend to perform better, enjoy the workplace, are dedicated and show less burnout. But the problems which women face with marriage and motherhood makes them quit their jobs. They aren’t given a similar status as that of their male counterparts. But if companies follow a few rules they can increase the women into their workforce and achieve more productivity-

Get rid of gender stereotyping-

Companies believe that males can perform better at work compared to women. Women are supposed to care for the home and hearth, even if they work for a company she isn’t given any pivotal roles. It is believed that her primary work is that of a caregiver and she won’t be able to take proper financial decisions.

We are seeing from the last so many decades women are outshining men in every arena. From school level to the workplace. There has been a paradigm shift in the mindset of people and companies are accepting women. They are being offered integral positions in the companies and women. Women essaying these key roles are becoming an asset for companies. Once gender bias is eliminated more women will join the workforce.

Flexibility-

Since women play a dual role if they work i.e of a caregiver and office worker they should be given flexibility. This will help them develop their goals and along with that will adjust their schedules accordingly. Both family and work will get importance and work conditions would be wonderful.  Positive work culture will help in increasing performance and productivity. Companies that give flexibility to their female workers will benefit compared to companies that put pressure on the number of hours spent in the office. Companies who emphasize a number of hours, late-night working and even working on weekends create a toxic scenario, so women opt out of these jobs. Companies that create a conducive working environment and make their women employers feel valued can benefit from having an increase in their workforce. More women will join as they will be able to do justice to both family and work.

Encouraging women as role models-

Companies that encourage and promote women into leadership roles are benefitted. This attitude can help more women to join the workforce. Being gender diverse and including women can show a company’s progressive attitude. Their company policies where women are treated as equals will increase the women’s tribe. Giving women senior positions in the company irrespective of gender and praising them for their performances can be an added bonus. This kind of positive feedback will increase the chances of women joining the workforce without any inhibitions.

Mentorship and support-

Companies need to change their policies towards women. Women who return to the workforce after a long sabbatical due to childcare or some other family issues are given a cold treatment. Women develop low self-confidence, low self-esteem, outdated skills, and family bias. Companies should provide women mentors to help women return back with elan. Their strengths should be identified instead of nagging them about their weaknesses. This will encourage more women to join the workforce

Value them as individuals-

Women do not boast about themselves as they are socially-conditioned to undervalue themselves. Their dual role is not appreciated and the male mentality reigns superior. They are bogged down by family responsibilities and have to juggle between both families and work to make a balance. They suffer at the workplace, by being meted an inconsiderate behavior. Companies who treat both the employees whether male or female as equals and believe in giving maternity and paternity leave are benefitted. They make provisions for their employees in providing childcare and understanding them. These kinds of companies can increase the women workforce as their focus is on women’s expertise and acumen instead of their gender.

Company policies will have to change to encourage more women to join the workforce. Such policies won’t deter women to join the workforce

Dr. PREETI TALWAR

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