equality at work

5 elements that shape equality at work

When answering what equality at work is, it is essential to combine the ethical component (inequality between men and women is unfair) with the organizational component (inequality between men and women is bad for the productivity of companies).

In recent years, enormous progress has been made to achieve equality at work between men and women in the workplace. However, this problem still represents a massive social injustice, a severe economic loss for the companies that encourage or tolerate it, and a source of psychological distress for the women who suffer from it. 

Why is equality at work important? 

As obvious as it may seem, if an organization wants to include values such as team cohesion, employees’ emotional well-being, or talent retention in its corporate culture, it is necessary to emphasize action.

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Firstly, this type of discrimination in the workplace is not justified but unfair. Secondly, unequal treatment of men and women in the workplace is not part of the natural drift of any company. Still, it can be avoided by implementing a series of strategic measures. Moreover, it is terrible for the correct development of the company because it harms the experience of a significant part of the team. In short, it is detrimental to the mental health of the female workforce.

There are many accounts of unequal treatment, opportunities, and pay for men and women in different business contexts. Behind each one, there is a story, often waiting to be written or heard, about how to tackle it.

To help these stories build their plot, we have identified five elements that contribute to tackling a harmful practice to organizations because it is detrimental to their economic and human development. They work separately but are more powerful when implemented all at once.

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Elements that establish gender equality at work

1. Identifying the person responsible for the behaviors

Behind a way of acting, there is a person with needs, experiences, weaknesses, and strengths. All this has led them to be the way they are today, with their successes and mistakes. This means that behind someone who discriminates, there is someone who does not understand the consequences of their actions. Behind someone who does not claim their rights, there is someone who has not learned to do so or has concluded that doing so is not worth it. Behind a team in which everyone should be working under the same conditions, some people are being hurt, and others benefit from the harm done to others.  

2. Reporting unjust practices

Outrage is the type of rage we feel when we sense that an injustice is being done. Often our indifference, passivity, or situation of inferiority lead us to remain silent, even when that emotion is triggered. It is a very human reaction, but it does not change things. With firmness and assertiveness, we must point out what is wrong and call it by its name whenever we can. 

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equality at work

3. Building networks of cooperation 

Companionship, empathy, mutual help, and cooperation are fundamental aspects for a job to succeed and improve people’s mental health in the office. In any context, in the work environment, support networks between women, between men, and those formed by women and men are essential for life and an oasis amid unpleasant situations. Let’s take care of these networks. 

4. Keep generalizations under control.

Describing reality in terms of broad categories (“men,” “women”) is practically inevitable for everyday communication to flow. However, we must also leave room for more refined analyses. Through this, we can realize that, when we look at people closely, women are not in a particular way, and neither are men. Seeing the individual behind the mass helps analyze the phenomena we experience more rigorously.  

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5. Encourage everyone’s involvement

Significant social changes are enormously conflictive when they do not involve all members of society. That is why the self-affirmation of an individual or group cannot be achieved without the influence of the other individuals and groups with whom they live. 

Ultimately, claiming what is fair is the starting point for considering equality at work, and it is best done when everyone’s commitment is achieved. Each individual is entitled to their views, but that does not mean irreconcilable disagreement when it comes to detecting unfairness. Remember that to be patient with the perspectives of others is not to conform to them or to bow to them. 

equality at work

Emotional well-being program for companies

At ifeel, we know that work should not disrupt people’s well-being. That is why our team of psychologists, experts in well-being at work, has created an emotional well-being program for companies that positively impacts talent retention, reduces absenteeism, and combats employee stress. 

In our Resources section, you will find helpful material, such as podcasts, HR guides, or interviews with HR managers. In addition, we have a Psychosocial Risk Factors Template, which you can use to comply with the requirements of the Labor Inspection.  

Thanks to our emotional well-being program, your company’s HR managers can receive personalized, data-driven advice on improving the psychological well-being of their teams. In addition, this program offers employees a 360° mental health care service structured at different levels according to their needs. Try our program today to see how it could help you.

We hope you found this post about equality at work helpful. If you would like more information about our emotional well-being program for companies, request it, and we will contact your team as soon as possible.

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