To reach gender equality in your organization and supply chain, it is key to have the support of all people. Most people in an organization want to support gender equality and make a positive impact on women, but they often don’t know what holds women back or what they can do to support them. Men taking action for the advancement of women is key to driving change and closing the gender gap. In this blog we provide some practical steps that can be taken to promote gender equality in the organization and supply chain practices, promoting male allyship for gender equality. Go here to find out more about why gender responsive procurement is so important to your and your business.
Education and information
Educating yourself about the challenges women face in supply chain roles and the broader context of gender inequality. This will help you understand the issues better and be more empathetic towards your female colleagues. Education means reading articles and publications about this topic and utilizing organizations, like SheSupplies. Participate in diversity and inclusion training programs and workshops. These can help you better understand the challenges women face and provide strategies for creating a more equitable workplace. The best way to learn is to listen to the voices that matter, women.
Listening and learning
Actively listen to the experiences and perspectives of women in your organization. Encourage open and honest conversations about gender-related issues and challenges. Be receptive to feedback and learn from their experiences. Creating an opportunity for women to be honest is the responsibility of any management positions or executives. So, creating feedback mechanisms within your company or supply chain that allow women to express concerns or make suggestions for improvements in a safe and confidential manner. The advocacy of women’s voices can be an everyday practice, using your position to actively listen to and amplify the opinions and concerns of women. Ensure that their contributions are acknowledged and respected.
Women are often tasked with more caregiving and child rearing responsibilities in their private lives, so it is important to encourage work-life balance. By supporting policies and practices that promote work-life balance for all employees, this may be especially beneficial to women.
Support training and education initiatives that help women build skills and competencies in supply chain management. Encourage and promote participation in relevant courses and programmes.
Becoming active and involved in initiatives that support goals of gender equality is a great step to take. Join or support Employee Resource Groups (ERGs), if your organization has gender-focused ERGs, consider joining or supporting them. These groups can be valuable in driving initiatives for gender equality. Collaborate with women colleagues and allies to develop and implement gender equality initiatives within the organization and for the supply chain.
Support a diverse supply chain
Supply chain diversity is a key element in promoting gender equality. Advocate for supplier diversity by encouraging your organization to work with women-owned and diverse suppliers in the supply chain. Supporting women-owned businesses is a great step towards a gender equal supply chain and a great help for the economic advancement of women. A good way to start is to map the current supply chain (ownership of women or other underrepresented groups). Once you have an idea of the supply chain you can set goals and take measures. SheSupplies encourages and supports organizations to start assessing their supply chains and take practical steps towards a more diverse and inclusive supply chain.