- Women continue to experience pervasive mental health issues at work, according to a recent Deloitte survey of 5,000 women in 10 countries. The firm found that 53% of respondents said they were more stressed in 2022 than they were last year, and 46% said they felt burned out. Fewer than half said they received adequate employer-provided mental health support.
- Against that backdrop, 59% said they experienced at least one “non-inclusive behavior,” such as harassment or microaggressions, at work in the past year, compared to 52% in Deloitte’s 2021 survey. LGBTQ+ women and women of ethnic minority groups were more likely to report such experiences than their peers. Women in ethnic minority groups were also more likely to say they felt burned out than their peers, Deloitte said.
- Hybrid work also has proved a challenge for respondents. More than half of those who worked in hybrid environments said they experienced a lack of flexibility, or were worried about this happening in the future. Fifty-eight percent of women working in a hybrid environment said they had been excluded from meetings or discussions, and 66% said they experienced microaggressions.
The transition to hybrid work at many organizations has brought with it fears that employees may be working longer hours, even with promises of flexibility and work-life balance. Though some may prefer to do so, others may face factors beyond their control that force them to work in ways that leave them feeling unable to disconnect, sources previously told HR Dive.
Deloitte’s findings come at a critical time for talent managers, if recent research is to be believed. An October 2021 survey by consulting firm Gartner found that 65% of female respondents said the pandemic made them rethink work’s place in their lives. For those with children, nearly 70% said the pandemic had “changed how they view certain aspects of their life outside of work.”
And in March, survey data from management consulting company LHH showed that female respondents were 16% more anxious about their next career move than their male counterparts.
The pandemic’s impact on women has sometimes been cited as a motivating factor for adopting hybrid work policies in the first place. But Deloitte’s report shows that just because a workplace is nominally hybrid does not mean it will automatically benefit women. Employers, the firm said, could improve flexibility by ensuring any hybrid solutions are fully supported by leaders and managers; adjusting workloads; and enabling those wishing to take advantage of flexible policies to do so without fear of a career penalty.
Each of those responsibilities could fall under the purview of a chief hybrid work officer, or some other cross-departmental leader who works between teams to ensure that technology, communication protocols and policies permit workers to thrive in a hybrid environment. Investment in employee benefits, particularly those that help caregivers, also may assist workers who need more balance.