The Rise of Women in Construction
Construction is a laborious job, so of course, it’s automatically going to be considered a “man’s job”. This stigma has plagued the demographics of the occupation for years, with many women not even entertaining the prospects. This is not surprising, considering conditioning women to avoid getting their hands dirty is ingrained at a young age. But a true understanding of the many facets within the industry has more women intrigued. As of recently, women have entered into and are claiming spaces that would otherwise be solely occupied by men. This trend is growing within construction.
A very small percentage of the construction industry is made up of women but that number is steadily increasing. Construction agencies are starting to realize a very important component of success. “A recent study by McKinsey indicated that companies ranking in the top quartile of executive-board diversity were 35% more likely to outperform others financially” (ENR). More diversity means a better profit. Thinking outside the lines of what the norm is has landed many companies on the right track to benefit from the minds of women. Diversity also means reaching a much wider audience and securing clients who promote diversity within their own organizations. It also signifies that the agency is open to new ideas and change, encouraging progressive ways of building a structure. Providing even more proof, “Glassdoor reported that more than two-thirds (69%) of all executives rate diversity and inclusion as an important issue, up from 32% in 2014” (ENR).
Once women have entered the industry, there are also opportunities for growth. Making way for female executives, CEO’s and overall leadership position will place women at a better advantage. Much like other corporate entities, the construction business is learning how to adjust to the way society is changing. Surprisingly the pay gap is much better within the industry than others. “The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that women in construction earn an average of 95.7% of what men make” compared to the average 81.1% across all industries and markets. Now is the best time to enter into the construction business because of the growth potential. Everyone, including men, need to advocate for the continued expansion of women in leadership roles within construction. The future looks really bright for agencies looking to expand beyond their current constraints, leading to a more balanced outcome.
In order to really impact change, companies have to do some evaluating. Are you maximizing your potential and truly looking at an array of candidates to fill positions? Are there areas that need improvement? Making a conscious effort to look for the best and not just a narrow perspective of what you think a person in construction looks like. When all these factors are addressed and made better, then we will see even more change at a rapid pace.