There are many similarities in humans, there can be things like similar facial construct or hair texture, but one unique difference is gender. Gender tells the characteristics of a boy and a girl, a woman, and a man.
In some job openings, gender is a crucial factor for selection. It can close room for a specific gender and create more offers for another gender. Though this has become an argument in some corporate worlds today, it still has not stopped this practice of ascribing a particular role to a particular gender.
The female gender is believed to be the gender mostly affected or discouraged from applying to a particular role; however, there are instances where the male gender is also discouraged from applying to a particular role.
Gender can affect and influence various organizational behavior, career growth, and even expected outcomes.
Therefore, this article will focus on and discuss in detail how gender can affect career growth or progress and possibly highlight some solutions to these problems.
How Gender Can Affect Your Career Progress
1. Career Choice
People choose a career based on how much they want to earn and how influential they can be, but some fail to understand that their gender can undermine their possibility of doing well in that career path.
When you start digging into the necessity of a career, you will understand that gender can be of great importance. Men dominate most career filed, and it will take a woman some extra work to compete, and in situations where they can’t, they will be forced to leave or retire.
However, the world is now revolving, and there are rapid changes. Governments and organizations are now allowing women to compete in a favorable environment. Some of these rules have given women reason and tools to compete and make the best out of their careers.
In politics, engineering, and even the health sector, there are now gender inclusion and specific allocation for a particular gender.
Therefore, people will choose their career based on how easily their gender can be integrated and progress; while some do not care whatever gender dominates, they believe they can strive, and they do strive in most cases.
There are different societal standards associated with men and women; these standards can be influenced by culture or religion, and some can be due to geographical influence.
Men are known to be more assertive and direct, while women are sensitive and nurture better. These attributes of both men and women can be a factor that will determine how they can perform in a particular role or career.
Women are not allowed to occupy a too demanding position because of either religious, cultural, or societal perceptions. As a result, women are mostly given lesser roles, while men tackle more challenging ones, thereby making gender a factor that determines one’s career growth.
In a similar way, there are positions men are not allowed to handle because of the gender perception surrounding the position. An example of such a role is handling little children in schools. It is naturally perceived that women will do a better job.
It doesn’t matter how good you think you can be in such a position; you will likely not get it or become frustrated with time. Gender perception is something that can affect and influence your career growth.
3. Career Experiences
Career Experience is one clear criterion that comes with most job advertisements or offers. You are expected to build a rich experience over the years, which will determine if you will get the job or not.
Since it is an important factor, it becomes more difficult for the female gender to secure a role or get a job. This is because, more often than not, men are the ones that have rich loads of experience.
Since gender perception limits women from participating in roles that can enrich their career experience, men have and gather many experiences, widening the gap between men’s and women’s employment opportunities.
Therefore if your gender can limit your career experience, it will also affect your career growth since you may not work beyond a particular role or task.
4. Work-Family Conflict
Work-Family conflict has been a continuous issue that affects both men and women who are responsible for taking care of the family while sustaining their jobs.
However, gender seems to be at the center of this issue because it dictates how it affects a person and who is affected the most.
The female gender has been on the receiving end of the most affected. Women tend to sacrifice more often for the family than their male counterparts. In addition, there are cases where women will have to halt or quit their job due to childbirth or move in with their spouses after a change of geographical location.
On the order hand, men will more likely go for a higher-paying job, not minding the risk associated with the job, so long as they can provide for their family.
This shows that men are more likely to attain better career growth with a depth of experience and even better pay compared to women.
Family-career conflicts can be resolved on mutual understanding between spouses, also governments and organizational rules to accommodate women, especially nursing mothers.
5. Sexism and Discrimination
Women are mainly victims of this; they are easily prejudiced and stereotyped in a working environment.
When it comes to recruitment or employment, your gender determines if you will be picked; in some cases, where you are fortunate to be hired, you may not be given the opportunity to handle certain roles, creating that work discrimination atmosphere.
Women are being asked to offer sex for a job or a job promotion, and this sexism becomes an issue for them to progress in their careers, especially when they decline such an offer.
Sexism and discrimination are the results of gender-based perceptions of a job, and it has become a growing issue, affecting career growth, especially female career growth.
Since we have been able to highlight some key ways your gender can affect your career growth or progress, let us look at how to tackle some of these challenges when we find ourselves in such a situation.
How to Handle the Disadvantage
1. Be Conversant With Your Employer’s Policies
Most companies and organizations have an employment manual; this employment manual will help you know the best way to approach certain situations like sexual harassment or discrimination.
You can also take advantage of engaging or reporting the situation to the Human Resources department.
Do not let anyone intimate you; stick to your right and demand them. You have equal rights to be protected and work in a policy-friendly work environment.
2. Keep Proof
If you have details of this report in writing, audio, or video, ensure to keep them safe; they will serve as backup evidence to substantiate your claim.
This has been seen to help many people over the years. It will also help facilitate quick resolution and compensation.
A suggested proof is video proof, an audio could also help. Taake courage while doing this, I know many may seem to fear the outcome, that they might get caught while making a proof worthy evidence, it only has to do with the courage you can summon up.
3. Report Complaints to the Proper Authorities
Do not carry grudges or pain alone; report your case to the appropriate authorities. In a work environment, the appropriate authority is your boss or the Humans Resources department.
If you will also need a form of therapy, it will be wise to go for some counselling to help you deal with the whole situation.
One thing is important, do not let these slide, because someone else might be a victim.
4. Speak to a Lawyer
There are situations where those you are meant to report your case of sexual assault or discrimination are the ones committing the offense. In such a situation, you will need to get a lawyer.
Your lawyer will assist you with the best options available and how to address the case from a legal perspective.
The law was created to assist you in these situations, and if you have a strong case against the perpetuator of this, it can go a long way with not helping you alone, but also helping other members of society.
Gender can indeed affect your career growth; it can influence the decision of employers and the possibility of getting a job.
We have highlighted the challenges associated with gender issues and possible solutions on how best to tackle these challenges.
Hope you had a great read.