Should Women Work Harder to Get Promoted?

According to Hive(1) research, both women and men complete about 66 percent of their assigned work. However, women were assigned 10 percent more work than men, even though they chatted 20 percent more than their male counterparts and also worked less on weekends.

As many as 4.07 percent of male respondents answered that they worked on weekends, while only 3.59 percent of female respondents worked on weekends.

Women achieve the same completion rate as men followed by other factors, indicating that women use their time more efficiently and work more effectively.

Unfortunately, women are assigned and spend more time on non-promotable tasks than men. These non-promotable tasks are any activity that is beneficial to the organization, but does not contribute to career advancement.

A study from the Global Institute for Women's Leadership states that the intelligence factor is also considered to be one of the most important things for women to achieve success. As many as 37 percent of respondents said that women have to work hard to be successful, while only 29 percent of respondents said that men need to work hard to be successful(2).

The next study was conducted by Lee Hecht Harrison (3) which stated that,

Despite this extra effort, women are still significantly outnumbered in the senior leadership teams of top UK companies; they hold only 29 percent of Financial Times Stock Exchange Group 100 board positions(4).

This happens because of the attitudes and beliefs of women themselves who think that they have to work harder, feel unable or unworthy to apply for a promotion even though they have the same job, carry the same burden at home, have the same education and skills as men.

Maybe for some women, working harder means learning more, doing a better job and growing faster. But what usually goes unnoticed is the appreciation that is worthy or not worthy of the hard work.

In an interview about 'We (Have to) Try Harder: Gender and Required Work Effort in Britain and the United States'(5) research, sociologist Elizabeth Gorman says, “This is what women are up against. They have to prove themselves. [And] We do not want employers to be exploiting female workers because they know women impose higher standards on themselves and will work harder.”

In fact, apart from working well - not working harder - there are many other factors that can accelerate a woman's career.

“When women hit a ceiling at work many tend to think just working harder and being better at their jobs will push them through to the next level. However, in our study we find the most successful women have additional attributes that accelerate their careers,” said Lee Hecht Harrison Penna in an interview.

There are five behaviors that leaders can adopt to help women climb their career ladder:

 Companies also have to take into account the hard work of women when considering who to promote and reward. Make job performance standards more transparent and take responsibility for their evaluation.

There are several stories from women leaders that can be discussed on this topic in the following link.

7 July 2021

Tiara Tri Hapsari


Photo by Karolina Grabowska from Pexels