Going through my annual ritual of goal-setting for the year ahead and considering the lessons learned from 2021 has been different with the unpredictable surge of Covid-19 and trying to guesstimate the impact it will have when I’m trying to grow a business.
An article written* in 2021 by Ciara Nugent for Time referenced a World Economic Forum report that concluded that the pandemic extended the estimated time to close the global gender gap by 36 years meaning parity (economic opportunity, political power, education and health) between women and men will be reached in approximately 135.6 years!
These are sobering numbers and the statistics do not improve when taking into account women of color for whom jobs have returned more slowly. This is an opportunity to boost feminist recovery, prioritize women-led businesses and create infrastructure and industries that support women’s economic security.
Caregiving and care-work – whether to children, the sick or the elderly – is still largely undertaken by women and therefore not adequately supported or recognized. The pandemic has provided new perspectives on work-life balance, on the need for flexible working conditions, affordable childcare and insight into what makes us most productive at work.
We must persist in finding workable and probably novel solutions. We owe it to ourselves and the economy needs us!
Let us continue to work against what Bonnie Hammer has called the “she-cession”. I wish you well in your endeavors in 2022!
*Nugent, Ciara. Time. April 2021. After a Terrible Year for Women in the Economy, These Places Are Working Toward a Feminist Recovery From COVID-19