Do you want to know why women are leading the workforce?
Since the fall of COVID, we have seen unemployment rates go up, down, up, and sideways, but what remains stable is that women are forging their way into continued education to further their careers — and that’s why 2023 just may be the year of women affecting the workforce.
The pandemic shut down nearly 64 million jobs for women
The year 2020 proved to be one in which more women lost their jobs as they juggled homeschooling their children and managing a career. For some, they walked away to begin a startup; on the flip side, most of the women who lost jobs were minorities. The statistics of education and career/labor market I don’t have, and I would prefer not to assume that the women of color who lost their jobs had minimal education. But truth be said, you can’t work remotely if you are a cashier or in retail, housekeeping, etc.
The great resignation
This is what you call opportunity knocking on the door. This moment in history forced the eyes of corporate America to reconsider what value, work ethic, and qualifications women can bring to the table. As stats show, women dominated the numbers of those resigning and wanting careers that had flexibility with remote work and higher wages. New bargaining shifted the job market; the cards played in favor of the employees’ hands — and the employees knew it. A new visionary of sorts, this opened the door for women to further their education and have a leg up on more opportunities within the job market come 2022. Kudos, ladies, for thinking strategically.
Who returned vs. employee retention?
When we returned to the workforce in the office, flexibility still existed, but some stats I came across showed that more men returned than women. So why did we ladies not fully return? My theory is that wages were not fully met, and the limited opportunities in corporate America still existed. Basically, the glass ceiling is broken along with the ladder. When will women be heard and appreciated?
2023: Could this be the comeback year?
Well, from formulating hunches and chatting with my corporate girlfriends in leading positions, I’d say companies are focusing on equality and challenging the old system of doing things. They are re-evaluating all levels of employment and what they can do to invest into the employee through mentoring programs and continued education. Keeping women is the goal, and that needs to be a collective effort to consider a more open and flexible way of employee reviews, wage increases, and promotions within the company.
The retention issue
It will always fall back on how well a company can keep its women leaders and employees.
We need more women in leadership roles. There needs to be more flexibility in scheduling employees and understanding the economic crisis that is facing everyone these days. Encouraging mental health awareness and work-life balance will help shift the work culture. Finally, invest into your employees, through interoffice growth opportunities and training. A receptionist should be able become an administrative assistant to the CFO of the company — and that scenario is more likely if you invest in your employees and understand the complexity of working women struggling with work-life balance.
Corporate America is shifting, with the boomer generation retiring. Corporate needs fresh blood, ideas, and a new generation of leadership that understands that you can still get things done differently. Basically they can be innovative, and that can be priceless.