Most People Think Women are Controlled by their Hormones at Work

2015 has been a positive year for gender equality, with many key issues topping the news agenda, however, it appears there is still some work to be done in 2016.

Expert Market, the leading B2B comparison site asked more than 2,000 people questions about their experiences in work with gender bias and results showed that while the majority believed gender discrimination to be a myth, most of the people asked had made decisions or judgements about women based on their gender.

The overwhelming majority of those asked did not believe in the gender pay gap (63%) and said they had not witnessed or experienced any discrimination towards women (86%), yet these same respondents admitted they had considered whether a woman would go on maternity leave when making hiring decisions (37%) and 54% said they thought a woman’s behaviour at work was dictated by her hormones.

These results suggest that many ingrained feelings about women in the workplace are not seen as being discriminatory, despite them having an impact on a woman’s potential employment or pay.

Grace Garland who conducted Expert Market’s research comments: “The survey essentially shows that most people do not think there is much discrimination going on, but conflictingly, they do believe in damaging stereotypes such as that the women they work with make decisions due to their hormones. It might appear harmless enough to say these things, but when these same people are making hiring and firing decisions you have to believe it might impact who they select for a role or how they interact with their colleagues.”

The results showed that:
  • 54% of office workers think a woman’s behaviour in the workplace is dictated by her hormones
  • 63% do not believe in the gender pay gap
  • 37% of hiring managers have considered the possibility of a woman having a baby when making decisions on who to hire
  • 50% of people think there are differences between the capabilities of men and women in the workplace
  • 39% have felt a woman is out of the loop when returning to work after maternity leave
  • 14% of people think it is right that women are paid less than men
  • Only 14% of those asked had experienced or witnessed discrimination towards women in the workplace
  • 6% had experienced or witnessed discrimination towards men
  • 81% thought women and men should share childcare