Have you ever read the comments that follow news articles about gender equality in the workplace? They can get pretty ugly.
Adjectives like “whining,” “victimized,” and “delusional” get thrown around a lot—and nine times out of ten it’s by men. (We’ll be taking a closer look at some of the angry comments we’ve received in a future post—stay tuned!)
So why would a website like ours—one dedicated to measuring workplace support for women—actively encourage men to participate?
In addition to being a gender diverse team, we’re a curious team, and when we were considering how men fit into the InHerSight plan, we often came back to two questions that we wanted to answer:
- Do men want to rate their employers’ support for women?
- And if so, how would their scores compare to ratings from women?
Here’s what we’ve found out.
Men want to participate
While there’s a lot of momentum around finding ways for men to support workplace equality, at the moment, men make up just 5 percent of our ratings. It’s a small number but we’re excited—it shows that there are men who care about these issues and want to help drive change by sharing their insights.
With the trend toward more male participation, we expect to see the percentage of ratings by men continue to grow. Male leaders like Marc Benioff (CEO of Salesforce) and Brian Krzanich (CEO at Intel) have been speaking up about gender equality, and campaigns like #LeanInTogether are giving men more ways to get involved. And as co-author of The New York Times, series Women at Work Adam Grant recently stated, “As a man, I don’t feel that this is just a woman’s issue; it’s a social issue.”
Men see a slightly rosier conference room
We had three theories about men’s ratings.
- Men’s ratings overall would be higher than women’s. In other words, we thought men would perceive support to be better for women than women would.
- Men’s ratings would be most in line with women’s for our Culture category, since that’s an area where many of the variables are more universal, such as wellness initiatives and flexibility.
- Men’s ratings would differ the most from women’s in the Family category because they may never personally experience things like maternity leave and won’t find themselves searching frantically for a lactation room.
We were two for three. It turns out men’s ratings differ most from women’s in the Career category. Take a look:
Our data set is young, so we’ll know more as time goes on, but it’s encouraging to see that men are not only participating, but they’re (mostly) seeing the same workplace dynamics we are...with some work still to be done to get them to recognize a boys’ club when they’re working in one.
Read more: 6 Uncommon Signs You May Have a Boys' Club
How should we encourage more men to rate their companies? Hit us up on twitter with your ideas: @InHerSight