For a variety of reasons, women have historically been underpaid and treated differently in the workplace. The disparity between men and women cannot be justified by any of these reasons. Considering that men perceive women to be the weaker sex may explain why women are not paid the same as men. It may be true in some situations, such as construction or jobs requiring a great deal of physical labor, but women should not receive different wages or be treated unfairly at work. What is the best course of action in these situations? What should be done to obtain equity from an employer?
Let us first clarify the meaning of equity for those who may not be familiar with it. According to the NACE Center, the term “equity” refers to fairness and justice and is distinguished from equality: Whereas equality means providing the same to all, equity means recognizing that we do not all start from the same place and must acknowledge and make adjustments to imbalances.
The Fight for Equality
Women fought hard to obtain the right to vote in this country decades ago. It is important to note, however, that this did not resolve all the issues. Over time, women became aware that they were underpaid in comparison to their male counterparts. The recent developments in the United States regarding women’s rights to make their own decisions and advocate for their beliefs have not been encouraging. While American society has gained more equality over the past few decades, it needs to include equity among the genders as well.
According to Forbes magazine, Women are paid 79 cents on the dollar of their male colleagues (that drops drastically to 39 cents for the top 2% of wage earners in the U.S.). Considering that many women have worked very hard to achieve where they are today in their careers, these statistics are quite discouraging. Although many women pursue college education and attain a bachelor’s degree, they are not compensated equally with men. According to Bestcolleges.com, women are less likely to negotiate compensation, with 2 out of 3 women not negotiating pay at all.
Advancing Gender Equity
Verna Myers is an American author, speaker, lawyer, and corporate executive of Netflix. During Women on the Move Leadership Day, she spoke about how to advance gender equity at work. She stated, “Too many women quit without talking to someone. Don’t make assumptions about what can or can’t work without talking to someone for more information.” Many women believe that choosing the easy way out rather than standing up to the problem is the solution to the problem, but this is not the case. In the event that you wish to move on to another company, it may be the best solution for you. However, you must learn to stand up for yourself both in and outside of the workplace. It is possible that the same problem will arise with your next employer, and you will be back to square one once again.
Due to the fact that women outnumber men in this country, it is important to ensure equity in the workplace. Several women choose to run their own companies, enterprises, or organizations to obtain better employment benefits. For women who are aware of unfair workplace treatment, it might be a good option. When facing such circumstances, what should a woman do if she wishes to remain with her current employer, but demands equal compensation or benefits?
Competing with Men
We live in a society that discourages women to a great extent. They believe that they will never be able to compete with men or hold positions that are equivalent to those held by men. Women should seek out other women who are in positions of leadership in the workplace. Identifying these women is intended to help us understand how they climbed the ladder to success. Women who are currently at the bottom of the ladder will find this inspirational. This experience will enable them to achieve success in their careers or allow them to establish their own businesses.
In this society, women must also recognize their value and privilege. Women fought for their right to vote decades ago, as mentioned earlier. In this regard, women will continue to speak out and advocate for their rights. As a country, we are entitled to freedom of speech. Women need to stand up for themselves, especially at work. In terms of my own experience with equity at work, I have had limited experience, but I have spoken up when I felt an older man was acting in an inappropriate manner toward me. I acted on my own in order to prevent this situation from escalating further.
Typically, I am among the many women who do not feel comfortable speaking their minds. However, when I am disrespected, I know that I must overcome my fear and speak up. My experience is not unique, and unfortunately, I won’t be the last woman to put her foot down in such an uncomfortable circumstance.
Continued Support for Women
The principle of equal pay for equal work should be kept in mind. In our society, this should be guaranteed regardless of who you are. Be careful not to be deceived by anyone. Make sure you keep your head high and put your foot down. Support women who have achieved success. Represent women at the bottom of the social ladder who wish to reach the top of it.
A powerful and well-compensated position should be available to both women and men. Great ideas and successful corporations are often driven by women, but they are not always recognized for this when it is due. Ensure that this does not happen to you. Don’t be afraid to speak your mind and make sure you receive what you deserve. When negotiating fails to resolve your workplace issue, seek alternative solutions. There is a great deal of injustice in our society, but there are solutions to all its problems. You should identify your solution and proceed accordingly.