Social Issues And The Workplace
Women leadership at workplace
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Human, being a social animal cannot live alone and want a society for the survival and fulfillment of his needs. Society is one of the main institutions that teaches man how to live, what to do and what to not. Society teaches people how to survive and fight back with situations which are not appropriate. Despite knowing the importance of a society, the fact cannot be undermined that the same society and some of its conventions create issues regarded as social issues. There have been given various definitions of social issues but according to James. H. Henslin any aspect of society about which people are concerned and want to change can be termed as a social issue. Most common social issues found in almost all societies are crimes, poverty, gender differences, racism, sexual harassment and a few others. With the advancement of time, it has been witnessed that women started raising their voice for their rights from the last few decades. By spinning the wheel of history, it has become obvious that women were treated inhumanely but at present they are making their presence known in all fields of life (O’Connor,et,al,2018). Women leadership has become a hot topic for the past few years as women are playing an important role in leadership, but despite the increasing number of females in boardrooms and senior management, still the role of women in leadership is considered against societal norms. Women are not being accepted as leaders because of the conventional and conservative mindset which needs to be changed as per the demand of time.
Women who are already playing the role of a leader in any institution or those who wish to play a constructive role in leadership are facing many difficulties as the role of women in leadership has become a major social issue. One of the main reasons behind this social issue is the conventional thought that men are dominant and they should be at the top positions as leadership is being considered as something only inherited by man. Leadership is directly linked with process of influencing someone for something and traditional gender roles claim that only men have the right to rule the society. Gender equality is hardly accepted in society so accepting women as leaders could be next to impossible. The role of women in leadership has become a social issue because of psychological dominance of men which make them fear the dominance of women. Women are being discriminated everywhere despite reaching the top positions in universities. Women leadership is facing a number of challenges at workplace. Not only women face sexual harassment but at the same time they are being burdened with roles that are assigned by the conservative society.
Taking in account the discriminatory attitude, at local, national and international levels, women stepped into leadership roles for correcting attitude that supports inequalities. In a society, men are being given the position and authority to make decisions even when the due subject is women. Men are the ones who come to a final decision on all matters. Though it is the modern era but rituals which were practiced centuries before are still there and gender equality is still a far-fetched dream. It has become a social issue as challenges to the conventional role that has been assigned by the society. Taking a look at the past it has been seen that men were given the responsibility to run organizations and earn bread for their family. Making decision was considered to be the sole responsibility of a man. Role of women in leadership is affecting the professional environment as it inculcates a sense of inferiority and frustration for most of the men who work under women leadership. Decisions taken by women at the workplace are challenged as it has been claimed that men can make more logical decisions regarding a business.
There have been observed a number of negative impacts associated with this social issue at the workplace. Women had to suffer from many issues as she has been kept limited by social restrictions. Another major negative aspect of women leadership is cultural shift that questions women for making decisions as they would be held responsible for all consequences. Despite being in top management they have to face issues of sexual harassment. They are discriminated and their decisions are going to be tested over and over before giving a final judgment. One of the main negative aspects attached with this social issue is that women lack the skill to handle pressure as compared to men. Working and leading an organization means one has to learn how to handle pressure.
The fact cannot be denied that despite living in twenty first century and concurring all the fields of life still women are not looked upon as one who are equal to men. Keeping gender dominance in view, it has been seen that most of the organizations do not give female leaders the right of making decisions which they deserve, because those men who are against the equality concept they took the act of decision making by female leaders as their insult (Eagly,et,al,2016). Female leadership is going to affect those male workers majorly who are against women leadership and cannot bear women as their leaders.
Taking a look at statistics, it has been seen that most of the leadership positions are secured by women who in turn are generating more opportunities for women for getting jobs and academic opportunities, it is going to heat up the competition for males. Women leadership is challenging the set norms of society where men were supposed to lead and women were supposed to take care of families. Women leaders are vulnerable to become targets of prejudice. Most of the people used to say that women as leaders lack the stereotypical assertive and directive qualities. Women leaders are mostly disapproved for their strict and masculine behaviour.
Undoubtedly, role of women in leadership is still a social issue but evidences and reports show that the attitudinal prejudice against female leaders have lessened considerably. Workers at most of the workplaces say that they would work under women leadership but certain barriers are still in place which makes this topic social issue. Women have got place in boardrooms which manifest that gender relations have changed dramatically but still women at workplace have not arrived at equality between the sexes.
It would be wrong to say that women leadership at workplace only have negative aspects, there could be seen positive aspects of this social issue as well. Women leaders at workplace could produce positive environment as they acknowledge the efforts of their workers. They love to appreciate those who work harder by encouraging and rewarding them. Female leaders are more understanding and friendly that gives the workers a friendly environment and confidence to put their suggestions that would work best in favor of the organization (Rast,et,al,2018). At workplace female leaders proved that they communicate better the men. Healthy communication is the main thing that is needed for knowing the thoughts and ideas of others. Many researches have shown that productivity and profit of organizations led by women leaders are much better than the organizations that are headed by male leaders. Women leaders are good listeners and their emotional side forces them to resolve the personal concerns of workers which gives the workers a sense that they really belong to the organization and in turn the employees put their best efforts for making their organization number one.
Education, training, governmental policies, awareness programs and positive social change is needed for promoting the role of women leadership. Various ways could be used for reforming the attitudes of men who think that women as leaders are threatening their careers and future. It is the responsibility of concerned authorities and government to make such policies that would promote and protect women who are effectively playing their roles in organizations and are making work environment better by showing their dedication.
Taking into account all the facts and figures, it is asserted that women are playing a significant role for making the workplace a better place by using their femininity. Despite knowing the fact that women as leaders in organizations are performing exceptionally well and are benefitting the economy, they had to face many issues. Firstly women are not being given chances to lead organizations but if they are given the chance, they have to face more issues than male leaders. It is important to take into consideration what time is demanding and what is the need of the hour. It is time to break the conventions that are of no use at present. Women leaders should be appreciated and provided confidence for their skills and abilities. Though the trend of gender role conflict is getting resolved but still there is a need to work for changing the mind set of people who become an obstacle in the way of women who are playing an important role at workplaces. Gender should not be considered as the base when it is about the productivity of an organization rather talent, management, skills and ability should be considered the topmost priority for judging how women leaders are contributing to their workplaces.
Eagly, A. H., & Heilman, M. E. (2016). Gender and leadership: Introduction to the special issue.
O’Connor, P. (2018). Introduction to special issue on gender and leadership and a future research agenda.
Rast III, D. E., Hogg, M. A., & Randsley de Moura, G. (2018). Leadership and social transformation: The role of marginalized individuals and groups. Journal of Social Issues, 74(1), 8-19.
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