Since UK’s 2017 implementation of a mandatory gender pay gap report, a Scottish mentoring program has been created with the goal of increasing the number of women in senior executive roles.
The Office for National Statistics reports are a compilation of data from UK companies with over 250 employees. The reports became obligatory in late 2017 as a way of forcing transparency in wage gaps.
The reports found that banks and other financial service firms on average paid men more than women; the median hourly rate for women working in the firms was 37 percent less than what the men earn. But what the findings also indicated was that the majority of men held top-level positions.
Establishing a mentorship program with the goal of increasing women in senior level roles in firms will hopefully help close the gender gap, because it opens up a path to opportunity.
By having a mentoring program led by other prominent Scottish business leaders, employees can look to someone to bounce their ideas off of in order to garner perspective. Mentees also gain wisdom from the trials and errors mentors experienced – vital tools and advice that can assist in navigating the professional field.
The mentor-mentee relationship isn’t the only way though. Mentees can often provide modern insight on projects.
“Mentoring is an extremely powerful tool in our arsenal,” said Tracy Black, CBI Scotland director. “It gives aspiring women the chance to learn leadership skills from the best minds in business and helps them access the kind of networks that can too often feel closed off to them.”
The results from the reports paved the way for open discussions about pay among employees and their employers.
“The issue is greater than one company or one industry though, and we want to work with leaders in all organizations across to Scotland so that collectively we can identify weaknesses and improve practices,” said Keith Anderson, chief executive of Scottish Power.
Some qualities they should will be looking to improve in employees include being proactive and asking the opinion of people that you emulate. Second opinions are always important.This can be said in almost any career sector. The value of networking is also invaluable when building a career because connections can open doors that would otherwise be difficult to open when you’re new to the business.
Each participating Scottish business leader will mentor three women for an entire year in the hopes of providing guidance and vital advice for the women’s careers. Perhaps the program will create a better and more inclusive work environment – one where women can see that moving up to a senior position is attainable, despite it being a male-dominated role.
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