Why? Because women are at a tipping point due to the impacts of the pandemic. If women are at a tipping point, then according to the well-proven business case for gender equality, so is business. And society in general.
At the time of writing this, my hometown of Melbourne is navigating its fourth hard lockdown since the onset of the pandemic. It will be yet another blow for the hard-fought inroads into workplace gender equality. In too many cases, this will have disastrous consequences on the lifetime earnings and financial security of women.
They must act! Unless leaders act to improve the workplace culture, policies and lived experience of women, then the recovery from the global pandemic will be delayed for both business and society.
Track talent-related data! Boards and Executives must insist on regular reports about the talent-related decisions as part of their risk and opportunity register process. By regularly reviewing the quantitative data associated with job losses, both voluntary and involuntary, promotion rates, hiring rates along with the qualitative data from focus groups, business leaders can maintain a vigilant approach towards gendered regressive impacts within their company.
These are a few of the strategies that inclusive, progressive leaders are implementing. As already stated, working women are at a tipping point right now. So are organizations and society. Now is the time to enact the recovery plan to get women back into the workforce. Not just because of the talent and representation women bring to the table, but because of the long-term consequences to women’s finances, which can trickle down for generations.