63% of the PR workforce is female- so why are only 25% of boardroom seats taken by women?

Why is it that even in 2018, we are still having trouble paying women the same wage as a man? Who is it that is telling us that women, who do the exact same job, deserve less pay?

Women have the instinctive ability to empathize, listen more and work in a team well, making public relations a natural role for many women to be able to fall into, and drawing in a fantastic clientele. Women possess maternal powers that make us fantastic at fighting our corner and advocating ferociously for clients. Therefore, it is easy to see why women make over 60% of the workforce within public relations and proving time and time again that women do a pretty fantastic job- so why is there such a divide?

Clearly, it’s easy to see that the everyday PR roles are fulfilled by women, which makes me wonder why there is this change when it comes to the boardroom? Why is it that the chief executives are more than 75% male? GWPR (Global Women in PR) looked into this matter and some of the results are a little saddening. When GWPR asked women what was holding them back from reaching their full potential a common response was to do with not having enough confidence. Many of the women interviewed had said that they would not be confident enough to ask for a pay raise or talk about their wages/promotions, with only 18% of the women feeling they would reach the top of the business ladder. Another look into why women felt they couldn’t reach the top, saw that women didn’t feel they would be able to juggle having that work-life balance whilst taking a seat in the boardroom. More than 80% of the women taking part in the survey were also mums and felt as though they couldn’t balance their work load and childcare commitments. My question is; why aren’t men finding these things difficult the same as women? Do the 78% of men not have children?

Not only is there a difference between gender equality in the boardroom, there also seems to be critical issue with average salary of both genders. The average wage for a man in PR is £46,156 and £41,584 for women in the same role. There needs to be a serious change soon within the PR world for the equality standards to get up to scratch, as women are crying out for help; so, what can be done? If we keep empowering women the way we have been doing these past few years, we can help each individual realise their full potential and help to make women remember that we are just as strong (if not stronger) than men. We can be kick-ass mum’s and kick-ass bosses who still have compassion running through our veins. The workplace could also help the family lifestyle by increasing flexibility in the working hours- job share, staggered hours and flexi-time are all ways in which business’ can help their employees to manage the work-life balance.

Luckily, the UK are taking a step in the right direction and from ‘April 2018 companies with more than 250 employees will have to publish their salary structures’. Whilst this isn’t directed completely towards public relations, it’s a step in the right direction- and we can all celebrate for that.

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