Women Abuse at Work
In today’s times, to carve a satisfying career for oneself, in the corporate world is not a child’s play. Added to this, if you are a woman, then undoubtedly, the path is prone to have hurdles. With a very small stint of my professional experience in corporate world, I realized how difficult it is for a woman to climb up the ladder. An obvious difference is visible in the growth rate of a man and women. A lot is debated about the presence of women in top management. Nonetheless, very less is spoken about the abuse that, women face in their formative years of the career. If you think, women at work in their formative years, do not face problems, then definitely you are living in a fantasy world.
Beyond the personal, family and societal pressures, women’s professional life is filled with a bed of thorns. During those formative years, when she paints her career dreams, a myriad of challenges appear in front of her. The obvious ones are the gender bias, equal pay and career growth opportunities. But the obscure thorns, are the ones that prick constantly in their day to day life.
In one such case, one of my friend and colleague, had worked continuously for more than fifteen days, in the name of ‘Project Release’. On the sixteenth day, when she had fallen sick and asked her boss for a day’s leave, he refused, stating, that the work was not up to the mark. After a month long of unyielding frustration, she finally decided to move out of the organization. In another incident, the woman was asked to quit by the middle management, only because she was pregnant and in the near future, she would be going in for a maternity phase. Hence, they did not wish to invest time and money on her. She was laid off without any prior notice. The sexual harassment thorn permanently pricks her, irrespective of the size of the organization. Her voice is typically muted.
The list of such countless instances ensues, setting barriers, in her day to day life. Her in depth subject knowledge, polished hard and soft skills, and leadership qualities, are always overlooked. She is relentlessly deprived of appreciation of her work. Her feedback is mostly ignored and disrespected. Beyond this, if she fights for her space and her rights, she is tagged as arrogant, bossy, witchy and what not. It takes an average of at three to five years for her to climb from the first phase to the second phase of her career. If she takes a break in her formative years, then she needs to climb the ladder again from the scratch.
It is true that, women have marched a long way, breaking the four walls of their kitchen. Yet, in this corporate world as well, the fight for their rights exists. Actually, we are living in myth that, corporate culture is getting more and more conducive for women. Men are more supportive of the idea of working with women at all levels. The fact is, most of the times, these thorns are seeded by the men.
Juggling between different roles as a homemaker, breadwinner, caretaker of the family, etc., women are relentlessly striving hard to fulfil their personal and professional dreams. Whether we accept or not, marginalizing of women still exists. In this cut-throat bewildering environment, the thorns are getting bigger and deeper, causing emotional and psychological glitches for her. Some men even have the audacity to penalize her, verbally and non-verbally, for no mistake of hers.
Researches have shown that, women at work, irrespective of her designation, can create wonders for the organization. Women are more collaborative, goal oriented, better negotiators, and impeccable leaders. Specifically, women are more likely to show empathy as strength, demonstrate strong ability in conflict management, and possess a sense of self-awareness. Given the right opportunity, women have always demonstrated to be the trend setters in their field.
Reflecting on the facts and working towards a, genuinely conducive environment for both men and women, to showcase their talent, is the path ahead. Treating them on par with men, respecting their capabilities and recognizing their work and inputs, is the sign of a forward looking and thought provoking corporate organization. Irrespective of her place in the organization, cautious and conscious efforts to end this female quarantine, at all levels, is the need of the hour.