Tips to Empower and Recognize the Women in Your Office
Women have made substantial gains in the workforce since the 1950s, transforming themselves from the stereotypical “housewife” to becoming leaders, innovators and inspirers who have revolutionized our culture into a multi-gene driven world. From Patricia Arquette’s 2015 Oscar speech – pushing women’s equality, to the U.K’s Employment Minister, Esther McVey’s #NotJustForBoy’s campaign on women’s growth in the workplace, people around the world have become inspired in helping women reach success. It is a important to acknowledge your female employees and colleagues by showing your support in their aspiration to becoming a successful, prominent leader in their industry.
The Department of Professional Employees recently updated Women in the Professional Workplace with new astounding numbers and statistics proving women are excelling in the workforce. As of December 2014, there are 73 million working women in the United States and nearly 51% of the professional positions are executed by females. That’s an incredible 13% increase of women in the workforce since 1972. Fortune Magazine has also seen the number of women in leading positions steadily increase since 1998. This statistic reached an all-time high in 2014 with 24 female CEOs in Fortune Magazine’s Fortune 500 list and 27 in the Fortune 1000, proving the status of women in the workforce has improved. However, in order for these numbers to continually grow, it is important for your female employees to know they are viewed as valuable and equal members of the organization.
“I have been a prominent leader at Rymax Marketing Services for 15 years and understand the powerful influence women have on our society. I acknowledge my position as a catalyst to inspire women towards reaching their full potential and to not let the politics of the workforce determine their success.” – Eve Kolakowski, Chief Operating Officer at Rymax Marketing Services
Recently Kevin O’Leary, otherwise known as “Mr. Wonderful” from ABC’s hit TV Show Shark Tank, was interviewed by Entrepreneur Magazine revealing that women leaders are his secret to success. O’Leary stated that women take fewer risks (in a positive way) and are more goal-oriented in terms of setting and meeting objectives. Kevin voiced, “If I want high returns with low volatility; that equals a women,” Nearly 55% of O’Leary’s CEO positions are held by women and if more male business leaders saw the advantages of female leaders, then perhaps they too could be as successful as O’Leary.
Recognition is one of the most powerful tools a business can utilize as it attracts and retains employees. When communicated effectively, recognition can result in a higher employee performance which in turn will increase your company’s success rate. While women continue to work towards equality in the workforce, it is important to understand how to converse with your female employees so that your message comes across as motivational and positive.
- Interpretation of Information: Numerous studies have shown that men interpret emotions, thoughts, feelings and information very differently than women. Women tend to read between the lines, while men take things for what it is at face value. Therefore it is vital to understand how to communicate your message successfully as men and women absorb information differently.
- Delivery of Information: Your delivery of information will ultimately affect the way a woman interprets it. Being more effective with workplace communication means you must be more conscious of how you are presenting yourself. Body language plays an important and effective role in communication, as facial expressions and gestures tell the listener what you are thinking regardless of what you are verbalizing. Your attitude and demeanor should be clear, concise and most importantly courteous.
- Reward and Recognize Success: Companywide rewards and recognition programs demonstrate respect for your employees. A meaningful and thoughtful employee appreciation program is about showing value for employee’s efforts while motivating them to succeed. Not only will a program like this help female employees gain the same level of admiration as men, it can also increase productivity and prevent your company from capsizing.