Creative, smart, and hardworking, women have continued to #BreakTheBias and strive for equality in life, across the board. Although we have made great strides in STEM, entertainment, business, and every other area, there is still more work to do. Girls across the world are being denied education, the wage gap is omnipresent, and VC funding to women-led startups is at the 2% mark.
The question remains, "What can we do?". First, we can take time to celebrate the achievements of women across the globe who are doing amazing things. Visibility is extremely important for the next generation. How can you aspire to be something that you've never seen? Next, women need support in the home and the office. Too often the burden of home duties and caring for children and parents becomes the role of women, even though men are just as capable of taking on these responsibilities.
In the office, men can listen to ideas intentionally and cognize biases they may have. In grad school, I worked on a team of three, with two other men, on a business simulation exercise. Although there was no team leader, one of the men suggested I be the one to enter the data into the simulator, while they worked out the solutions. Trying to be a team player, I didn't object. Now, looking back there is a reason this moment is stuck so vividly in my memory. I wanted to object. But, I didn't want to be considered a difficult woman. I had just as much to learn as they did. I would have benefited from computing the math and connecting the dots instead of following along waiting for instruction. Instead, I became the group secretary. We did well as the top company in the simulation. But there was still this nagging feeling that I could've contributed more ideas to the project. I learned my place on the team was just as valuable as theirs. Also, not to diminish my own growth by falling into the traps of bias in the workplace.
In addition, we need men as allies to speak up when men we interact with are not giving us the respect and dignity we're entitled to. If we intend on #BreakingTheBias there is still so much further to go beyond how far we've come.