In Celebration of International Women’s Day, New Survey Outlines Insight to Succeed in the Workplace

We Can Do ItThis blog post is in honor of tomorrow’s observance of International Women’s Day.

According to its site, the day has roots tracing back to the early 1900s. For instance, in 1908, 15,000 women marched through the streets of New York City in order to demand better pay, shorter work hours and voting rights.The first International Women’s Day was marked here in the U.S. in 1909 and the March 8th marks the official global date after discussions were agreed upon in 1913.

Okay, now that we know the back story and see how far we’ve come, there’s still room to grow. According to an Accenture survey, 4,100 professionals in 32 countries shared their behaviors and attitudes regarding careers and what it takes for women to succeed in the workplace.

More than 89 percent of female professionals in the survey and around the same number of male participants believe building their career capital is the key to success. And by capital we mean differentiated skills to define oneself and advance one’s career.

As years progress, it’s anticipated workplace changes by 2020 will focus on just what we suspected — flexible hours and multi-tasking. Speaking more than one language is valued as important as is being a team player.

Both women and men are optimistic about having more women working in leadership roles. We hope their anticipation is correct — 70 percent indicate the number of women CEOs will increase by 2020 and 71 percent say the number of women board members will also increase.

Sidebar: We can only hope stereotypes in the workplace will be broken down as well. The assumption is that CEOs are always male makes us cringe so we must say “women CEO” to qualify it; same applies to board members as we noticed that in their press release. Sigh. This is similar how it’s assumed nurses are female so the term is typically “male nurse.” Ah.

Back to the survey. Overall, more than half of them agree they have more education than what’s necessary to perform their job well and 72 percent indicate experience is more valuable than education in getting the job done.

Interestingly enough, pay raises and promotions are awarded to most people who ask. That’s worth repeating — pay raises and promotions are awarded to most people who ask for them! Approximately 57 percent of participants have asked or negotiated their pay raise and 77 percent received that raise they were gunning for. Get this — 15 percent of the 77 percent actually got more money than they expected.

Let’s promise to remember that statistic any time there’s hesitancy about asking for more money. Remember, you deserve it and if you don’t ask, you already know the answer will be no.