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"Office Housework": an invisible hurdle to gender quality

The authors of "The No Club: Putting a Stop to Women’s Dead-End Work" argue that women are more likely to be expected to undertake “non-promotable work” – the kind that is important to organisational functioning, but unlikely to be rewarded or even recognised. This includes tasks like writing up minutes from meetings, assembling entries for awards, serving on committees, selecting interns, organising holiday parties, and shopping for leaving gifts.

Their analysis of employee hours at a large consultancy firm found that regardless of seniority, the median woman spent about 200 more hours on non-promotable work each year than the median man – equating to approximately one month’s worth of dead-end tasks.  

Women’s time and energy is being disproportionately expended on thankless tasks.

So what's the solution?

  • Organisations and leaders need to change the way that work is allocated
  • Women need to get comfortable with saying no 
  • Women need to help each other to protect time and boundaries
  • Men can help by putting themselves forward for these types of task
A new book argues that “non-promotable work” – the kind that is important to organisational functioning, but unlikely to be rewarded or even recognised – is the invisible hurdle to gender equality in the workplace, with women’s time and energy being disproportionately expended on thankless tasks.

Tags

diversity equity inclusion, wellbeing, employee enagagement, leadership