For this second blog in our two-part series, we explore how women can create career equity for other women through advocacy and acknowledgment of women’s ideas and accomplishments.
Five Strategies to Advocate for Women in Your Organization
Leaders can advocate for women employees at the highest institutional levels by promoting gender equity, creating more inclusive work environments, and providing opportunities for women to develop their skills and advance in their careers. Advocacy involves speaking up for and promoting the achievements of women. This strategy creates a network of support that helps women navigate and overcome the unique challenges they face in their careers. When women support each other in the workplace, they create a culture of empowerment that benefits everyone.
Here are five advocacy strategies that women in leadership can adopt to support their women colleagues:
- Advocate for pay equity: Review your organization's pay practices and make necessary changes to ensure that women are not being paid less than their male colleagues.
- Advocate for leadership development: Invest in development opportunities like coaching and training programs that help women develop the skills and confidence they need to advance their careers.
- Advocate for flexible work arrangements: Enact policies that allow women to balance their work and personal responsibilities, such as telework, local or non-local remote work, or flexible schedule policies.
- Advocate for diversity and inclusion initiatives: Develop programs to improve diversity in hiring and promotion, and remove discriminatory practices in the workplace.
- Advocate for more women-centered employee resource groups: Promote and encourage involvement in employee resource groups (ERGs) that support women in the workplace, as ERGs can provide networking opportunities, professional development, and emotional support for women employees.
Take Advocacy a Step Further: Amplify Women’s Voices and Ideas
All employees deserve to have their voices heard – and amplification is an effective strategy to ensure that no one feels silenced or unacknowledged. Harvard Business Review defines amplification as “the public endorsement of someone’s ideas with proper attribution of credit.” Often, women are overlooked and silenced when they present and share their ideas and thoughts – easily creating a noninclusive work environment.
Fortunately, amplification allows attribution and acknowledgment. A 2020 study revealed that amplification provides credit to the original owner of ideas; is a sign of support; and can alleviate hesitation stemming from a lack of confidence in members of underrepresented groups. The study’s conclusion suggests, “Perhaps seeing one colleague amplify another [colleague] signals to other employees that the organization is a psychologically safe and welcoming environment in which to participate.” Let us all join in supporting one another by uplifting each other’s voices and ensuring no single voices are neglected.
Women Uplifting Women to Break the Glass Ceiling
By fostering an environment of support and collaboration, women can break down barriers and shatter glass ceilings, paving the way for future generations of women to succeed. Ultimately, advocacy and amplification are not just effective strategies for women to support women in the workplace - they are essential for creating a more equitable and inclusive world for all.
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