I often get push back on my approach with WIN.
“Wies,” I hear, “You put all the responsibility to get ahead in their career and get paid properly on women. What about all the biases that exist against women in the workplace? The likability bias, the motherhood bias? What about the women of colour and other minorities who are dealing with the intersection of different biases? Shouldn’t you focus on that?!”
Yes. These biases exist.
And they hold women in general (and women who deal with the intersectionality even more so!) back tremendously. They are a huge part of the problem that leads to the broken career rung, the gender pay gap, the abysmal lack of female leadership at the highest levels.
As such, they need to be fought with a vengeance. And that needs to be done at a governmental and company board level. I applaud and support the organisations and people doing this; the allies speaking up and changing law and policies.
And… that’s not my strength. I am not a lobbyist – have you noticed how much I swear? Being Dutch and raised anti-authoritarian, I am ill-equipped for the task. And I only have the energy to work with company boards that require no convincing they need to change their ways, who are only looking for the tools to do so.
My strength lies in inspiring women to take the actions they can take themselves and in offering the tool set to do so (no swearing in the language I provide for my clients, ha!).
I’m bloody good at that. And I believe wholeheartedly that everyone should work in their own zone of genius.
So to those that work at a higher level, changing rules and regulations – I bow to thee, with gratitude. And I am going to continue focusing on the thing I do well.
(Plus, here’s a little secret: the WIN grads are slowly and surely turning into an army of women that WILL change the world. The ripple effect of these individuals moving up in their organisations and then fighting these biases there and elevating women and other minorities… oh la la!)
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