What creates workplace politics
Workplace politics: women's quota is unfair to young men
A few weeks ago, Miriam Hollstein wrote at this point why she would like to be a quota woman and why it is time to use tough measures to push through more women into management positions. Now nobody will deny that the German working world urgently needs to become more women-friendly, also and especially in the higher management levels.
As desirable as this goal is, the cost of such a policy is seldom discussed. Because what appears to be necessary in order to establish gender equality in society as a whole necessarily creates injustice in many individual cases.
What may make sense for the collective, for society, is far less convincing if it is broken down into concrete life situations of individual people. Because the advancement chances of a certain age cohort of men would be severely curtailed with extensive measures to promote women.
You only have to ask around at companies that have either introduced a real quota of women for management positions or pursue an ambitious policy of promoting women, such as Axel Springer AG. The main victims of this policy are the group of 30 to 40 year old men.
They look around in astonishment and ask: And what will become of us now? Because the problem of promoting women has long been criminally neglected in many German companies, it is now necessary to overcompensate for the promotion of women, which goes far beyond just creating equal competitive opportunities for women.
Men's chances of advancement impaired
Otherwise you will not be able to bring about the desired rapid change. And this means that those men who are at the beginning or in the middle of their career path see their own opportunities for advancement impaired.
The irony of this situation is that the drastic measures to be expected to promote women will hit a generation of men who were already on the right track.
It is a generation that has internalized the equality of women in the workplace, at least in many employee milieus, that values working in mixed-gender teams, and that defines their role as fathers and partners differently than their own fathers, even in private life.
This can also be proven by the constantly increasing demand for the father's month. A quarter of fathers now take some time off to look after their children. In Bavaria, Berlin and Saxony it is even around 30 percent.
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