A new study out of Murray Edwards College at Cambridge University explores the ways in which men can help promote gender equality in the workplace. In an article for Bustle, the study is explained and explored. The college for women conducted the study after women employed there complained that the sexism they were experiencing at work was preventing them from advancing in their careers. The researchers interviewed 40 men at different stages in their career, asking questions about the way men and women interact in the workplace.[“Write my essay for me?” Get help here.]
In the published study, the researchers outline five ways in which they believe workplaces can change their culture to improve gender equality: seeking to understand issues with workplace culture, making visible how things get done, building closer relationships between the genders, individual interventions regarding biased behavior and actions for leaders to reward and support gender-inclusive behavior modeled by men in the workplace. By making small, individual changes, the researchers argue that workplaces can see a big change overall in women’s advancement in their careers.
The men shared situations in which they’d observed misogynistic behavior and offered suggestions for ways in which they believe workplaces can move toward the more equal treatment of men and women.[Need an essay writing service? Find help here.]
Some of the numbers in the study are pulled from polling done by organizations like Think Future and Opportunity Now. One of the myths the researchers aimed to debunk was that gender inequality will eventually become obsolete on its own. The numbers seem to show that this is not the case. According to a study done by Think Future in 2016, 72 percent of men aged 18-25 are confident that their gender has no bearing on their ability to progress in their career, only 42 percent of women in the same age group feel that same confidence. In 2014, Opportunity Now reported that 43 percent of women aged 28-40 feel they are not given the same opportunities to progress as their male coworkers. (Murray Edwards College, 2016) Despite an increase in awareness regarding gender inequality, it appears that time alone will not repair the disparities.[Click Essay Writer to order your essay]
While the study only included 40 men, the questions were broad-ranging. Before meeting with the men, the researchers shared with them a summary of research covering women’s perspectives on the issue of gender equality. The motivations of men varied based on their stage in their career, with early career men tending to be more open to change then those in the mid-point of their working life. The researchers also considered that men of the Millenial generation (those born between 1980 and 2000) were more likely to have grown up with working mothers and multiculturalism. These younger men may also see more gender equality in their work day because they are still at lower levels in their career. For these reasons, millennial males might believe that gender equality has already been achieved.
The study supports the author’s stance that gender equality benefits everyone in the long run. While the men interviewed were aware of gender inequality, those later in their careers seemed less willing to make changes. However, the article argues that changes made in the workplace to improve equality could create positive changes for men as well. Suicide is the leading cause of death of men under the age of 50 in the UK and many men are embarrassed to speak out as victims of domestic abuse. A culture of toxic masculinity could contribute to this (Lawton, 2016). Broadening the discussion of gender equality will not only benefit women in the workplace, it will benefit both men and women in many areas of life.
Lawton, G. (2016, October 20). Achieving gender equality in the workplace requires help from men, study finds, and it’s sadly not as much of a no-brainer as it should be. Bustle.
Murray Edwards College. (2016). Collaborating with men: changing workplace culture to be more inclusive for women.