How to stop perpetuating the gender pay gap

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Removing gender pay gaps

Upon reading an article from the New Zealand Herald here regarding the perpetuation of the gender pay gap, what stood out for me was the concept of institutional bias. Bias surrounds us.

When we are initially introduced to another person, we make an assessment of who we think they are based on a number of explicit and implicit indicators. The ability to be neutral and judge the person on what they actually bring to the table is a difficult task. Quotas certainly go some way towards challenging the situation.

Some organisations are taking a ‘don’t ask’ approach where recruiters avoid asking interviewees how much they are currently earning, working towards challenging stereotypes. That being said, institutional bias will still remain, and from what I know of how we humans operate with change, when there is a significant shift required it takes time. It takes a consistent and persistent approach.

Congratulations to Genesis Energy and Westpac NZ for chipping away at the norms with the gender pay debate and ensuring change is taking place.

The ’what are you earning’ question is the anchor to a salary negotiation. So, for anyone out there who is being asked this question the key is to make sure you know your worth, and anchor the negotiation in terms of that worth.

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