Millennial men might be the key to cracking workplace gender issues, says report

Men under the age of 40 are more likely to support flexible working and childcare facilities at work than older male co-workers

Shafi Musaddique
Wednesday 01 November 2017 17:34
Young men have been touted as a key support network for young women in the workplace
Young men have been touted as a key support network for young women in the workplace

Men under the age of 40 are far more progressive on gender diversity in the workplace than older men and are more likely to be supportive of gender diversity, new research shows.

According to a survey by consultancy firm Boston Consulting Group (BCG), ‘millennial’ men on average ranked on-site childcare and parental leave as one of the most important initiative for improving workplace diversity, in-line with women of all ages.

Younger men, on average, ranked measures to improve work-life balance in second place, matching answers given by women. In contrast, older men ranked leadership transparency and commitment as a top priority for firms.

“These findings provide company leadership with crucial proof that gender equality is not just a women’s issue” said Matt Krentz, a co-author of the report.

“With these insights, companies can enlist younger men as part of the solution; implementing initiatives that help them support workplace equality, increase retention of women, and ultimately, improve corporate financial performance.”

Katie Abouzahr, another co-author of the BCG report, said the findings suggest that “younger men today are more attuned to fairness in the workplace and are looking for a different way of working relative to their predecessors”.

The study, which questioned over 17,500 respondents from over 20 countries, suggests companies could tackle gender equality in the workplace by having flexible work policies open to both men and women.

Seventy-three per cent of men under the age of 40 said they were more willing to accommodate co-workers with flexible work schedules and keen to undergo training schemes to reduce bias, whilst only 68 per cent of men over 40 said they would accommodate flexible workers.

It also suggested companies provide extra support for employees with young children and ensure that managers make the business case for diversity clearer to older men.

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