Every organization is different, and yet research and anecdotal evidence reveals most have the similar types of obstacles that impede women’s progress toward leadership.  Some of the obstacles:

Unconscious gender bias that affects personnel decisions, interpersonal relationships, policies, practices, and culture

Assignment systems that allow supervisors to distribute work based on preferences and assumptions

Committees that are not structured to prevent the influence of gender bias

Performance review systems that allow bias to influence evaluations

Compensation systems that allow too much unfettered discretion

Talent identification programs that allow too much unfettered discretion

Lack of succession planning, which misses the opportunity to be more strategic about identifying, developing, and promoting women

Culture that stigmatizes the use of flexible work options

Assumptions that women will have family responsibilities, and that men will not

Male leaders who feel more comfortable mentoring and going to bat for male employees

Lack of accountability among leaders for advancing women

Can you tell if your company has these obstacles?  You know if your company doesn’t have a succession planning program, or an assignment system that strives for equity. Beyond that, it may be hard to tell without some investigation.  Often, a company’s managers will tell us there are no obstacles to women’s advancement, but our inquiries and the views of female employees reveal a different story.  Contact us today for help uncovering your company’s obstacles to women’s advancement.