Happy International Women’s Day
Today, THAT celebrates International Women’s Day. A day to highlight women in our lives, community, jobs, and industries who continue to push for change, equality and a better world for us all. A time for us to lift these women up, fight bias and broaden perspectives today, and every day forward, for us all to achieve an equal and enabled world.
We are all parts of a whole. Our individual actions, conversations, behaviors and mindsets can have an impact on our larger society. Collectively, we can make change happen. Collectively, we can each help to create a gender equal world.
~ International Women's Day site ([https://www.internationalwomensday.com/Theme](https://www.internationalwomensday.com/Theme))
Our core principles for us at THAT are positive impact, change, community… when one of us rises we all rise together. Bringing equality to our community, to our industry, will involve all of us. On this day we want to not only acknowledge all of the incredible women in our THAT Family, but encourage each of you to help us push for #EachforEqual.
International Women’s Day History
March 16, 1911, the first International Women’s Day was held as more than one million women and men across Austria, Denmark, Germany and Switzerland attended rallies campaigning for women’s rights to work, vote, be trained, to hold public office, and end discrimination.
Six years later, on February 24, 1917, women in Russia marked the day by staging a strike for “bread and peace” to protest food shortages, poor living conditions, and World War I. After that event, International Women’s Day was transferred to March 8th and has remained the global date since.
The Unequal Playing Field
The “broken rung”. We often refer to breaking the “glass ceiling”, but that’s not where women are getting held back, instead it is the initial step up to manager. For every 100 men promoted to manager, only 72 women are promoted.
Which leads to…
- Women stuck at entry-level jobs.
- The number of women promoted continuing to decrease at each new level.
- Women occupying 26% of executive, senior-level and management positions in S&P 500 companies.
- Only 7% of Fortune 500 Companies run by women.
Looking just at tech…
- Women hold only 26% of the jobs in tech. Less than 20% of software engineers are women and these numbers are declining.
- Only 5% of leadership positions in tech are held by women.
When it comes to equal pay in tech, according to a recent study by Dice…
- The Great Lakes region has the 2nd largest gender pay gap in the U.S.
- Software Engineers have a pay differential of -\$8,559 between men and women.
Why We Should Care
The advantages to a diverse and equal team are undeniable. If we look at economic spending, women control around 73% of all household spending in the U.S. They account for $4.3 trillion of U.S. consumer spending out of the total $5.9 trillion spent. Think about the improved ability to tap into that economic force if there were equal voices in the rooms.
We also know…
- Women-led companies have historically performed three times better than those with male CEOs.
- Companies with more women in leadership roles perform better and have better family policies.
- Diverse teams are often more innovative, productive, and have greater profits.
- Employees on diverse and inclusive teams put in more effort, stay longer, and demonstrate more commitment.
Reaching Equality: What we can each do
Reaching equality will take all of us, regardless of your gender. We are all parts that make up the whole. Here are just some of the things we all can do every day:
Be heard. Women tend to focus on “invisible” tasks and stay quiet in meetings. Let your work be known, share your ideas. Don’t minimize yourself. Be heard.
Help to highlight the work and ideas of women around you. If you have privilege in a room, meeting, community, lend it to a woman. Let your support of her be heard.
Empathy. We will never know what it is like to walk in another’s shoes, or understand the obstacles they face. But we can listen and grow our empathy skills. Ask questions, meet new people… we won’t always understand the why or how someone feels but we can empathize. Trust what they tell you and take steps when and where you can help to raise their voice.
Get involved. There are countless women-owned businesses, non-profits supporting and educating women… shop there, support, volunteer.