Helping Women Find a Way Forward
Women that have had to leave the workforce in recent months may find that slipping back in as if nothing has happened—might not be an easy task. That’s why more and more women are turning to the gig economy, as it provides flexible work and a way for them to earn money while juggling responsibilities such as child care.
To better support all women in the workplace, Sandberg says company leaders need to not only do a better job at promoting, mentoring and sponsoring women, but they also need to do a better job at understanding the pressures women are facing during this unique time.
While different companies have different systems, Sandberg says, “It’s imperative for leaders to evolve those systems so that employees know you appreciate and respect the situation [they] are in. “We can make work work for women and men,” she says. “We can make work work for parents if we are flexible and if we give people the support they need. This is a moment where rather than move backwards we can move forward.”
New Normal, New Opportunities
A recent study, Women @ Work, completed by Deloitte, emphasized the need for flexibility from employers, especially for female employees. Nearly a quarter of the women surveyed say better childcare support, short-term leave and better resources to support their mental health are the top three things companies can do to keep them.
“This is about embedding flexible working as the norm,” said Codd of Deloitte. “It’s about leaders’ embracing it. It’s about knowing that working differently to what may be the norm is still successful. And it’s about not judging on presenteeism. It’s about judging on outputs.”
With this in mind, organizations have an enormous opportunity in front of them.
Businesses that take the time now to develop different ways of working, can emerge stronger than they were pre-pandemic.