Today, LeanIn.Org and McKinsey & Company released their study on the state of women in Corporate America, titled Women In The Workplace. In the study, certain markers of career success and personal happiness are judged based on input from many participating companies in various fields. The study essentially tells us we have a long way to go before women’s equality in the workplace is a reality in America. However, the study does outline a few key actions that can be taken, and they are ones that we are already implementing at AssistPro™.
The Women In The Workplace study does not present a pretty picture. It tells us women’s advancement and progress in their careers is slow and may even be stalling. It points to many different reasons for these conclusions, but I prefer to focus on the solutions presented in the study. I was particularly proud to realize that at AssistPro™, many of the solutions outlined by the Women In The Workplace study have been a part of our culture from the very beginning. We are a woman owned business, but many of the core elements of our company culture are driven by the Entrepreneurial Operating System®, which I believe serves as an excellent guide for building company culture that allows a business to grow while also allowing its employees to become their best at the same time.
The Women In The Workplace study states that we must give Managers the means to drive change. While this advice is specific to building gender equality and diversity inside a company, it is also a critical component of general management culture. When Managers are empowered to assess and adapt for the sake of their teams’ success, the entire organization and its clients benefit. At AssistPro™, our Managers are accountable both for their results and the results of their teams. We have noticed, since implementing an accountability structure, the engagement of our Managers in their teams’ success has improved significantly. An empowered Manager is an engaged Manager, and one that is looking out for the best for his or her team.
The study stresses the importance of flexibility and work-life balance. An AssistPro™ Managing Assistant is a virtual assistant. She is tasked with managing certain aspects of her client’s business, and she prioritizes that work around her daily family life. An AssistPro™ Managing Assistant can handle some tasks when no one else is in the office, meaning she is also able to take her little ballerina to dance every Tuesday afternoon. We believe a woman who is able to be both the person and employee she desires to be will always be her best self. When you don’t have to trade your relationship with your family for your career, you are more invested and engaged as an employee.
While we all have a long way to go in creating more opportunities for women’s careers, I feel confident we are well on our way. As more companies adopt a culture that allows employees to do their best work while also being their best selves, I am confident we will see positive change in the workplace and advancement in gender equality.