Our work can contribute positively to our lives as a source of creativity, learning and contribution. But the COVID-19 pandemic highlighted the challenges working women face as they juggle family obligations and professional responsibilities, resulting in increased pressure, stress and fatigue.
As we mark International Women’s Day on March 8, there’s no better time to recognize the social, economic, cultural, and political achievements of women. It’s also a time to answer the call to action for accelerating gender parity by identifying the work that still needs to be done.
Recent data from MIT Sloan shows female workers suffered more from pandemic-era stressors that have led to illness at alarming rates. Two out of three women interviewed (out of 500) said they were coping with physical symptoms of being sick from workplace stress. The research also highlighted the significant impact of workplace toxicity on women of colour.
Whether it’s after a break related to the pandemic, a leave of absence, or maternity leave, women face unique challenges when returning to work. Many women left the workforce during the COVID-19 pandemic and others were forced to switch to working from home, resulting in an additional burden of household tasks and child care. Women also frequently face gender discrimination in the workplace and still face the barrier of a gender pay gap. All of these factors can contribute to workplace stress for women.
There are a number of ways employers can help women workers prioritize their health:
Employers can foster a workplace culture that empowers women by increasing visibility and representation of women in the workplace, providing equal pay and benefits, and encouraging flexible scheduling. Please contact us so we can work together and create solutions that work best for you.