Gender equality has always been a worldwide problem. Girls and boys see gender inequality in their homes and communities every day – in textbooks, in the media and among the adults who take care for them.
As leaders, it is not enough to acknowledge the importance of gender equality. We must actively seek solutions to this problem and promote the cause. In this blog post, we will explore what being a catalyst for change means in the gender equality revolution, and the role that leadership plays in shaping a more equitable future.
The truth is that women and men will never be 100% equal. Biologically, we are constructed in a different way. But gender equality is not about who can lift more kg in the gym. It’s about giving people equal opportunities, rights, and recognition in every aspect of life. This includes education, employment, political representation, personal autonomy and not only.
Sad but true – Statistics on gender equality
- On average, women in the labor market still earn 23 percent less than men globally, and women spend about three times as many hours in unpaid domestic and care work as men. More work and less money don’t sound fair, right?
- Nearly 1 in 4 girls between the ages of 15 and 19 are neither employed nor in education or training – compared to 1 in 10 boys. Moreover, girls who live in certain regions and communities may face barriers to accessing education. In those areas, cultural norms prioritize boys’ education, child marriage, and household responsibilities.
- Gender inequality is a major cause and effect of hunger and poverty: it is estimated that 60 percent of chronically hungry people are women and girls.
We know that men are sometimes discriminated and when we say “We stand for equality”, we refer to both genders. Even so, the sad statistics are more to women’s disadvantage.
Why should gender equality matter to me?
Gender equality is a fundamental principle of human rights and a matter of social justice. It can also lead to healthier and more stable families and communities. Gender equality contributes to economic growth and prosperity. According to McKinsey Global Institute, advancing women’s equality could add up to $28 trillion to global annual growth by 2025.
On the other side, if you are not convinced yet, think about the women in your life. Are they equal to men? Do they benefit from the same treatment from the society? If you think the answer is yes, I suggest you watch this TikTok.
What can we do?
👔 As a business
Policies and Practices: A solution for achieving gender equality is to make sure that your organization’s policies and practices promote gender equality. Encourage flexible work arrangements, equal pay, and family-friendly policies that support work-life balance for all employees.
Mentorship and Sponsorship: Support and mentor individuals from underrepresented genders in your field. Provide them with opportunities, guidance, and networks to advance their careers. Your mentorship can be a game-changer for someone seeking to break through barriers.
Educate and Raise Awareness: Organize workshops, training sessions, or events that raise awareness about gender equality issues. Engage your team in discussions about unconscious bias and how it can impact decision-making.Promote Diversity: When making hiring or promotion decisions, prioritize diversity and inclusion. Seek out diverse candidates and ensure that selection processes are fair and unbiased.
🧍 As an individual
Advocate for Change: Leaders set an example for others to follow. You should demonstrate your commitment to gender equality through your own actions and behaviors. Speak out against discrimination, stereotypes, and bias. Encourage open dialogues about these issues and actively listen to the experiences of others.
Community Engagement: If you really want to bring an impact, you can always get involved in community initiatives that promote gender equality, such as supporting women’s shelters, participating in mentoring programs, or collaborating with advocacy organizations.
AIESEC stands for gender equality. While leaders have the unique opportunity to drive change, it’s important for you, regardless of your role, to contribute to the gender equality revolution. Remaining a bystander in the face of inequality is not an option. You can support the cause by educating yourself, challenge stereotypes and promote inclusivity.0