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International Women’s Day 2022

This year the theme of International Women’s Day is ‘break the bias’, focussing on how our actions in our communities, workplaces, schools and universities can unite our individual actions with the purpose of creating a gender equal world.

This year the theme of International Women’s Day is ‘break the bias’, focussing on how our actions in our communities, workplaces, schools and universities can unite our individual actions with the purpose of creating a gender equal world.

The 2021 Women in the Workplace report found that women remain underrepresented in the workplace, and due to the ‘broken rung’ effect, women are promoted at lower rates to management positions, impacting career progression.

Women in leadership are more than twice as likely to support diversity and inclusion outside of their job role than men at every level of management, and to support more marginalised groups to succeed through mentorship. Around 1 in 10 working women have a disability and are far more likely to have their competence questioned and lack support from managers. This is more pronounced for women who are the only woman in their team.

When recruiting staff, it can seem wise to find someone just like the rest of a team, this is called ‘affinity bias’. However, different perspectives can be valuable and add to team dynamics. Make sure your criteria for hiring are standardised to reduce bias. Consider your assumptions; women who are parents are sometimes held to higher standards, assumed to be less competent and committed and are given fewer career opportunities as a result. This is maternal bias and is the strongest type of gender bias.

Missing out on women’s insights in team settings means limiting your creativity and can make it harder for women to progress in their career as they are not seen as important contributors. People in team leadership positions should consider gender bias in how people are asked to give input, perhaps by structuring time, to allow everyone to be heard equally, and to speak up if a woman colleague is interrupted.

Women in leadership roles can support or highlight the views of women in their team, to ensure that a diversity and inclusion policy leads to a diversity of perspectives in your work.

“At Mednet we have a close to 50-50 gender split and this is carried through to every level of management, with half our teams led by women in senior roles. We have always operated a flexible approach to working hours, to broaden our hiring to include people who are traditionally underrepresented in the workplace, such as people with chronic ill-health, mothers, and those with caring responsibilities. Having a diverse team of dedicated and committed people is important to our creativity and we want to keep them; by championing women in the workplace, we hope to break the bias and demonstrate what a range of views can achieve.”

- Miranda Stead, Director

Written by Holly Ross, Senior Medical Writer

8th March 2022

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Mednet Group

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Leeds & London
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