International Women’s Day: Working Together to Create #BalanceForBetter

March 5, 2019

By now you’re probably familiar with the data that shows if we continue progressing at our current pace, true gender equality in the workplace won’t exist for more than 200 years. While we have seen progress in some industries — gaps still persist in representation in leadership, as is illustrated by a UK campaign that highlights the equal number of CEOs who are women and CEOs who are men named Dave, and in wage. According to the Census Bureau, in 2017 the gender wage gap for all women remained stagnant (80 cents to the dollar) yet widened significantly for women of color. In short, we still have a long way to go.

At LinkedIn our vision is to create economic opportunity for every member of the global workforce. At its core, this means ensuring that everyone with equal talent has equal access to opportunity. This International Women’s Day we’re asking each of you to make a commitment to do one thing to help make that a reality. Below are a few simple yet actionable ideas for beginning to create gender equality in the workplace.

Take the #PlusOnePledge: Who you know matters. Some people are born into families and networks who can introduce them to mentors and coaches from a young age. Others struggle to simply to get their first job, not due to lack of talent or potential, but due to a lack of connections to open doors. Take the #PlusOnePledge and consider connecting with a woman outside of your network who works or lives in different circles. Respond to a post from someone asking for help in the LinkedIn feed, conduct an informational interview with someone outside your network or, if you’re in the position to hire, be intentional about interviewing at least one person outside of your first or second-degree network.

Shift your approach to hiring: Taking simple steps to ensure you’re building a gender balanced talent pool for any open role can have a sizeable impact on your business. This could mean nuanced changes to the language used in job postings, identifying and acknowledge some of your own bias that may influence how you view or what you look for in candidates, or digging deeper to understand what motivates different candidates.

Refer someone for a job: There are more than 20 million open jobs on LinkedIn, some of them may even be within your company. LinkedIn members are four times more likely to get a call with a recruiter—and nine times more likely to get hired—when they’ve been referred on the platform than if they apply without a referral. Take a moment today to refer a qualified woman in your network for a role within your organization or introduce her to a former colleague that may be looking for fresh talent.

Build your leadership skills: It’s equally important for men and women to master the skills needed to be transformational leaders. LinkedIn Learning offers courses that share advice on everything from negotiating your job offer to leveraging your unique strengths to become a leader. In celebration of International Women’s Day we’ve made these courses available for free, so take a few moments to invest in yourself personally and professionally. That way you’re ready to tackle opportunity whenever it presents itself.

While today is a day to recognize the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women — we will only truly achieve #BalanceforBetter when we begin to close the gaps that exist everywhere from pay to representation in the boardroom. By working together we can help create gender equality in the workplace.