We are proud to be supporting International Women’s Day 2020. International Women’s Day celebrates the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. Whilst we all know that gender parity within the workplace has improved over the past decades, we all also know that there is still a long way to go.
We interviewed Glory DeSimone, Founder at Glory DeSimone & Associates.
The theme for IWD2020 is #EachforEqual. Have you experienced gender stereotypes/gender bias in a professional context? If so, how have you been able to challenge this?
Having spent most of my 30 + year career in the Financial industry, I have seen the landscape dramatically improve for women. Earlier in my career, I was often one of a very few females on the management team, with the vast majority of the men married to homemakers. Being single at the time, many of these men did not understand that my career pursuits were for the long term, not just a stop before marriage and kids. Whenever I would encounter a situation where I was either talked down to, or my ideas were not being considered, I would politely challenge them by asking if this was the kind of work behavior they would be happy for their daughters to experience. That made them think twice before dismissing me the next time!
What does equality in the workplace look like for you?
I believe that workplace equality that lasts can only be achieved when the percentage of female executives approximates that of the men.
If you mentor professionals at the early stages of their careers, do they/have they encountered different equality issues than you experienced at the same stage in your career? What changes have you seen?
Women in the early stages of their careers today have a great deal more company support than ever before – – e.g., women’s resource groups, formal mentoring programs and corporate cultures that demand inclusivity. There is much less gender bias, but I think that today’s fiercely competitive environment makes it harder for women to distinguish themselves than men because we are more wired toward collaboration than competition.
What have you or your business implemented to achieve positive changes for an equal workforce?
Formal Diversity and Inclusion efforts that are leadership-led are making the difference in creating greater equality. We hold our leaders accountable for creating and maintaining an environment where everyone has the opportunity to do their best work. Accountability and measurement (tied to rewards) – – the combination is leading to positive change.