Moving beyond the glass ceiling
When the glass ceiling blocks the way up, is leaving a job the only way for women to advance in their career?
Recent research by the Robert Walters Group has shown that a lack of opportunity to advance in their career is the leading reason for women to leave their jobs.
The study asked over 700 professionals from a range of roles, industries and disciplines across the UK what the leading reasons were that might make them consider leaving their current jobs. Two out of three women (66%) responded that they would think about leaving their current role because of a lack of opportunity to progress their career.
By contrast, other leading reasons included working with a difficult boss (62%) and long working hours or poor work-life balance (50%).
What can employers do to provide the most opportunity for the best female talent?
Strike the right balance
Group Talent and Development Director at Resource Solutions, Indy Lachhar, believes the most important thing is providing access to the right balance.
"Employers who want to attract and retain the very best female talent need to make sure they they’re showcasing the opportunities available for career progression.
We all place a high importance on work-life balance, and this seems to be even more the case for women in the workplace. But this search for balance isn’t always weighted on the ‘life’ side of the equation. Many women are willing to make some sacrifices in order to secure a role that promises strong and positive career progression.”
Strive to work smarter
“However, that doesn’t mean that work-life balance initiatives and flexible working arrangements should be shelved because the ambitious types will just work harder. On the contrary, we increasingly need to work smarter, not just harder, and flexible working and work-life balance initiatives allow us to do this. They are remarkably effective at allowing us to focusing our efforts and be more productive, they make us more engaged with and happy in our work, and they help us and our businesses be more efficient at the bottom line.”
Be clear about your values
“Businesses and employers who want to attract and retain the very best female talent need to make sure they they’re showcasing the opportunities available for career progression. They need to demonstrate and advertise the fact that they value inclusion, and they need to do that not only during the recruitment process but also for existing employees.”
“The trick is to recognise that work-life balance initiatives can benefit both a business and its employees. Embracing such initiatives and getting the balance right can provide the marginal gains needed for the very best talent to reach their potential.”