Women in leadership face ageism at every age

Women in leadership face ageism at every age

women at work

21 September 2023

Hande Yaşargil, our Director of Diversity and Inclusion, comments on a current diversity and inclusion issue. Add your own comment to this on our LinkedIn post.

A recent research-based article published in the Harvard Business Review, Women in leadership face ageism at every age, focuses on gendered ageism. This is a bias in the intersection of age and gender which shows that there is ‘no right age’ for women leaders.

The article says that there is ‘always an age-based excuse to not take women seriously, to discount their opinions, or to not hire or promote them’. The research is full of stories that speak of the same experience.

The article suggests solutions for organisations in how to overcome this bias, mostly as a part of D&I strategies, training and interventions. But how about coaching? How does this bias show up in the coaching world? Here are some questions for coaches, supervisors and coaching buyers. Please share your own experiences in the comments below.

Are you aware of your own bias on gendered ageism, and how does it impact your approach to your client?

• Do you work on this topic with your supervisor or supervisee?

How does it impact your matching decisions on coaching and mentoring assignments?

If you are a woman, how do you feel about your age? How much is it under the influence of the stereotypes that exist in your society?

What tools and approaches do you use to support women to deal with this bias?

How can you make sure that gendered ageism is not a hidden metric in your people management systems?

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