MONDAY is International Women’s Day – celebrating their achievements around the world.
But over the past year, for many it has been a feat just to stay in work.
The pandemic means vacancy counts in the top 20 female-dominated occupations have fallen three times faster than in traditionally male sectors, and research from career network LinkedIn finds two in five women feel their progress has fallen back.
Many have then been further sidelined by homeschooling duties.
LinkedIn senior director Janine Chamberlin says: “Women have had a tough time. As well as jobs being vulnerable, many have taken extra responsibilities at home.
“This is on top of an ‘entitlement gap’ holding women back from the pay increases and promotions.”
But successes abound.
Lauren O’Donnell quit her job as a social media boss at banking group HSBC just over a year ago, to launch plant-based breakfast pots firm Oatsu with help from business network Enterprise Nation.
Lauren, 29, of Mill Hill, North London, says: “I’d say to other women with a business idea, to get out there, be bold and back yourself – you do a dis-service to the people who need your product or service if you don’t.
“Starting a business from scratch has boosted my confidence.
“I love how much variety I have in my day. I’m in the kitchen preparing orders, helping a customer, solving a problem or making new connections.”
Here are some tips from experts on how women can forge ahead.
LINKEDIN senior director Janine Chamberlin has this careers advice . . .
- Share achievements. Many women struggle to vocalise these for fear of being seen as over-confident, but there is no shame in being proud of your successes and we need to start normalising self-promotion.
- Seek out a female mentor. This is crucial. It helps women visualise where they might see their future. Don’t be afraid to approach women you admire, in your workplace or beyond.
- Enhance your skills. This can help you feel more confident as you apply for new jobs or have a progression conversation with your manager.
- Do your research. Putting yourself forward for promotion, a new role or salary increase? Research job and salary levels online and be clear about what you want.
- Lean on your network. Tapping into your communities, both inside and outside work, is a great way to offload, share knowledge and get advice that benefits both personal and professional growth.
ENTERPRISE NATION founder Emma Jones says this about women starting a business.
- Test out your idea, first of all, on family and friends.
- Plan. Think I’M OFF: Idea, Market, Operations, Finance and Friends (who can help). Find free planning templates online.
- Look for free digital tools such as Dropbox and Google Docs, and start-up loans.
- Use of social media. LinkedIn is essential for a business-to-business venture, and Instagram for fashion or food. Get Twitter and Facebook pages.
- Outsource to freelancers once busy, then hire a team.
IF you’re a parent who has been homeschooling, could you teach in a classroom for real?
As children finally head back to school, recruitment specialists Get Into Teaching have launched a campaign to find new teachers.
Each year the profession needs around 35,000 trainees.
Once qualified, the minimum starting salary is between £25,000 and £32,000 depending on location.
Roger Pope from Get Into Teaching said: “After a year like no other, it is understandable that many people are now looking for a career that allows them to give something back to society and forge a career path they find more rewarding.”
For more details see getintoteaching.education.gov.uk, or call 0800 389 2500.
CLEANKILL needs pest control technicians.
Apply at email@example.com
New level suits Daisy to a T
AT SCHOOL but unclear on your future career?
Why not consider a T Level?
Designed with leading businesses and employers, the qualifications, launched last September, are two-year courses combining classroom learning and an industry placement of at least 45 days.
T Levels are aimed at 16-year-olds who have just completed their GCSEs and are looking at getting into skilled employment.
They are a great progression route if you want to do an apprenticeship or go on to higher study.
Jennifer Coupland, chief exec at the Institute for Apprenticeships and Technical Education, said: “T Levels sit alongside apprenticeships and are equivalent to three A Levels.”
One of the first to take a T Level is Daisy Croxford, 17, from Portsmouth, who started on the education and childcare course at Havant and South Downs College in September.
She said: “I hope I can show people a new option which may be better suited to them, compared to other courses that don’t offer you a chance to experience working.”
Rehires can be answer
MANY firms ban any hiring of former staff – but it can save time and money.
Here Rhiannon Staples, corporate culture expert at people management platform Hibob, explains why it can work.
- Taking back an ex-employee can offer easier transition, as they are familiar with the company’s culture, management style and expectations.
- An old hand can return with new ideas and perspectives gained from other jobs.
- Rehiring can cast a workplace in a good light. A former employee returning often means they enjoyed being there in the first place.
- Understand why the person left, if by their own choice, and consider the positive aspects of their previous performance at the company. Were they creative, productive, a critical thinker or maybe detail-minded?
- Recruitment managers must check to see if any issues that may have led the employee to leave are still present. If they left for better pay, evaluate if your pay structure is good. If they were a poor cultural fit, consider if anything has changed to indicate if the rehire will work.
THE PUBLICIS GROUPE has launched an open apprenticeship scheme offering advertising industry career opportunities to 10,000 low-income and ethnic minority trainees.
GOT a story? RING The Sun on 0207 782 4104 or WHATSAPP on 07423720250 or EMAIL firstname.lastname@example.org