Women in the Workplace Lesson

Hello, class! My lesson is essentially about the existing disparity in salary which continues to disadvantage women across a vast number of career fields; though the gap has been lessened over past decades, we have not yet reached a point of true, measurable equality in the workplace. During my brief time as your teacher, I hope to call attention to the factors that perpetuate this facet of inequality, and tackle the layers of intersectional experiences that deepen the issue. I further intend to introduce specific ideas for individuals to employ in their daily lives (as presented by Sheryl Sandberg) to give a sense of direction for navigating future careers, and how they can take part in a movement towards a state of equality for all women.

 

Before class, I ask you to read this article, which offers a basic introduction to the topic of pay inequality, and this article that contains a series of current findings on the realities of the American workplace.

 

Once you have completed these readings, I would like for you to contemplate the following questions, and submit your answers as a comment on this post or as a hard copy on the day of my lesson.

1) In your opinion, what could be the major factors in perpetuating inequality in pay for women? Which of these factors would be the most difficult to overcome?

2) What steps can we take towards creating a fair workplace environment for all people? This can include specific actions for individuals, or even broader ideas as to which specific aspects of our society must undergo change in order to achieve this goal.

3) Do you think we can ever truly achieve equality for all people? If so, do you think we will be able to accomplish it in our lifetime, or will it once again fall to later generations?

5 Replies to “Women in the Workplace Lesson”

  1. 1) In your opinion, what could be the major factors in perpetuating inequality in pay for women? Which of these factors would be the most difficult to overcome?

    The social construct that makes people uncomfortable with sharing their salary information among their coworkers is probably one of the major things that is keeping women from being paid equally to men. There are also the issues of gender stereotyping, the idea that women are simply complaining, and the idea that some genuinely believe that women are actually just innately worse at some things.

    2) What steps can we take towards creating a fair workplace environment for all people? This can include specific actions for individuals, or even broader ideas as to which specific aspects of our society must undergo change in order to achieve this goal.

    Perhaps this can be achieved by having a fairly posted salary plan that awards greater salary based on actual input/output from the worker than the impression of their work.

    3) Do you think we can ever truly achieve equality for all people? If so, do you think we will be able to accomplish it in our lifetime, or will it once again fall to later generations?

    I don’t think it’s possible to achieve equality for all people. It would take too much planning and interference from some overseeing body that would have to be checked by another body and so on in order to keep them from being overly powerful.

  2. 1) I think the major factors are when there’s children to look after, and the notion that women at least have to have the same or higher college degree/education to become successful. I believe that probably the most difficult factor to get over that holds onto inequality in pay for women is the notion that when a people have children, it is the women’s responsibility to take care of them, even if that means taking a step back from her job.

    2) I think the biggest and main step and we can take towards creating a fair workplace for everyone is to really just not discriminate. No matter what gender, race, or disability everyone should be offered a fair chance and be respected the same way because everyone is good at something, and if anyone can handle and perform well at a certain job matter what, then why should someone with a different gender or race be held higher than everyone else when it doesn’t make a difference.

    3) I’m not entirely sure, but I do think we have a better chance of this happening than not. I have faith in humanity, and I think if we were to achieve equality for all people, It would probably happen in our lifetime, but only when we are really elderly.

  3. Noah Wilson

    1) In your opinion, what could be the major factors in perpetuating inequality in pay for women? Which of these factors would be the most difficult to overcome?

    One obstacle is women having majority shares is career fields that pay less than field which are predominant male. Another one is the factor that men are more competitive than women and seek out high status jobs for the sake of dominance instead of economics security. I’d say the competitive disposition issue would be the most difficult to over come.

    2) What steps can we take towards creating a fair workplace environment for all people? This can include specific actions for individuals, or even broader ideas as to which specific aspects of our society must undergo change in order to achieve this goal.

    Encourage women to go into higher paying fields.

    3) Do you think we can ever truly achieve equality for all people? If so, do you think we will be able to accomplish it in our lifetime, or will it once again fall to later generations?

    No, nor do I think it’s really a bad thing that we probably never will. Seeking out statistical equality simply for the sake of statistical equality is a waste of time. It’s more important that everyone has the same opportunities at the begging of life than the same results at the end.

  4. 1) In your opinion, what could be the major factors in perpetuating inequality in pay for women? Which of these factors would be the most difficult to overcome?
    I think the largest factor in the gender bias in the workplace is the stereotype that women are solely responsible for caring for children. With this obstacle, it makes it nearly impossible for women to retain employment after they give birth. However, women also face issues of prejudice from fellow employees or their employers.

    2) What steps can we take towards creating a fair workplace environment for all people? This can include specific actions for individuals, or even broader ideas as to which specific aspects of our society must undergo change in order to achieve this goal.
    I think the main thing we must correct is the mentality of people. If we could revolutionize the way we think both about labor and about women, it would pretty much eliminate all possibility of bias.

    3) Do you think we can ever truly achieve equality for all people? If so, do you think we will be able to accomplish it in our lifetime, or will it once again fall to later generations?
    I think that equality is not possible anytime soon. Each generation comes up with something new to judge people by: gender, sexuality, class, race, etc. Until we change the mindset that necessitates difference, nothing will change.

  5. 1) In your opinion, what could be the major factors in perpetuating inequality in pay for women? Which of these factors would be the most difficult to overcome?
    Our societal constructs have determined that women are either supposed to be in their traditional roles or there’s too much of a financial burden on the company to hire women.The most difficult to overcome is the fact that companies find women to be a financial burden, because more women are stepping away from their traditional roles, and entering the workforce.

    2) What steps can we take towards creating a fair workplace environment for all people? This can include specific actions for individuals, or even broader ideas as to which specific aspects of our society must undergo change in order to achieve this goal.

    We need to get rid of the idea that women are only hired for certain jobs and expand that idea that women are able to enter any position that they are qualified fro.

    3) Do you think we can ever truly achieve equality for all people? If so, do you think we will be able to accomplish it in our lifetime, or will it once again fall to later generations?

    I believe so. I believe that we are getting closer everyday, with the changing climate on women activism. I believe that once we understand that companies should hire the most qualified candidate then the problems with the gender pay gap will be closed.

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