AVA was created to help professional women like you advance your career in a solution-oriented, actionable learning community.
At AVA, "should I stay or change jobs" is the question we hear most and what prompted our virtual panel, Discovering and Building a Female Friendly Work Environment and the follow up blog Should I Stay Or Should I Go.
We've also heard that the advice women are often given is to "just leave". This isn't great advice when statistically women are more likely to end up somewhere similarly unable to appreciate their value. Leaving is often at greater sacrifice and risk for women. More importantly, if you do leave, how do you make sure you end up somewhere better? Here we give you some top tips from our panel on how to improve your offs of finding a gender inclusive workplace.
Many publications and associations offer lists of companies that are good places to work. Additionally, there are many sites now dedicated to women and finding good places to work. A quick google search will reveal many of them but here is a list of some of the top ones:
75 Best Large Workplaces For Women, Fortune
Fortune Best Workplaces for Women™ 2020 Great Places To Work
These Are the Best Places for Women to Work in 2019 FAIRYGODBOSS
Best Places for Working Women Magnify Money
It is also important to do some of your own research on the company. Dig into their public relations and the about page on their website. Further, as Trindl Reeves from Marsh and McLennan said at our panel, look at the facts on who makes up their leadership team.
Women-Owned And B Corporations
When looking to make a move and find a better place to work, women-owned and B corporations are two things that most probably increase your chances of finding somewhere more inclusive.
When women are in positions of power at companies, the companies gender-ratio of employees improves.
In general, it does seem that women-owned businesses are better for female employees but not dramatically better. It does seem, however, that women are much better off working in companies that have high-level women-- whether owners or managers-- to inspire and create opportunities for them. Forbes, Are Female Employees Better Off Working At Women-Owned Companies?
Due to the altruistic nature of B corporations, they strive to create meaningful work environments and serve as a model for inclusivity.
Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose. B Corps are accelerating a global culture shift to redefine success in business and build a more inclusive and sustainable economy.” Wikipedia
At our panel, Discovering and Building a Female Friendly Work Environment, Liz talked about her company, Future State, and how B Corp companies tend to be more inclusive because of their focus on a triple bottom line: financial, social, and environment performance.
Discover Their True Culture And Weigh It Against Your Definition Of Inclusivity
All of our panelists agreed on two important things: 1) It's a very personal decision and 2) use your network to uncover the truth about the company culture.
First, what you find inclusive may not be the same as what someone else does. Maybe for you flexible work or better family-leave benefits or promotion opportunities for women are the most important aspects of a company culture. This also often changes over your lifetime. So be sure to search our tools to help you decide what is most important to you before you start looking elsewhere.
Second, you need to dig deeper than the publicly available information to find out the real story. Once you know what you want, reach out to your network to find people that work there now or that have worked there. If you know someone that knows someone, ask them to introduce you. More than ever, women and men understand the importance of helping women at work. So don't be shy or get a sudden case of imposter syndrome. Be bold and connect with others to help increase your chances of finding somewhere right for you.
Most importantly, when you do get the interview, ask some key questions about their culture, about women who are already there and how they got to their positions, ask about the company's inclusion and equity initiatives. You will learn a lot from the interviewers' body language, what they say, and more importantly what they don't say when you ask these questions.
You have to do it by yourself, and you can’t do it alone. Martin Rutte
More than anything, we wish for you and all women a workplace and a career where you can thrive. Your equity and value matter.
A passion project, AVA was founded based on our deep conviction that all women need to proactively help other women in the workplace - no matter what industry, level, background or career goal. We take an inclusive, solution-oriented, candid approach to sharing tools and skills for women to be engaged, satisfied and successful in their work. We provide content and in-depth, safe workshops to learn and practice the tools and skills you need to Assess, Visualize, and Advance your career.
What topics do you want to discuss? Let us know in the comments below. Or share this on social media and use #advancewithava.