Men Championing Women’s Equality at Work

Men Championing Women’s Equality at Work

With support from a Status of Women grant, new leadership workshops for men will help create gender-equal workplaces.

Minister McLean discusses Next Gen Men’s Equity-Focused Leadership training with Jake Stika, executive director, Next Gen Men and Mike Bader, chief technology officer, Benevity Inc.

Next Gen Men, a non-profit organization focused on promoting gender equality, used the $50,000 grant to create the Equity-Focused Leadership program.

The program helps men establish more diverse and gender-equal workplaces through workshops, presentations and intensive training programs focused on:

  • Uncovering unconscious biases men hold about women at work.
  • Challenging gender roles and stereotypes in the workplace.
  • Exploring how leadership and communication styles affect women’s experiences at work.
  • Understanding power and privilege and becoming allies for equality.
  • Developing gender-equitable policies.

In Alberta, women make up nearly 46 per cent of the labour force, but hold fewer than one-third of management positions and only hold seven per cent of corporate board seats. Women in Alberta also earn nearly 44 per cent less than men for the same work, and make up about 60 per cent of low-wage earners in the province.

“We know when more women are leaders, companies make better decisions and are more profitable. But we can’t achieve women’s equality at work if only one gender is committed to that goal. This training will help men become powerful allies for equality. And when men support women at work, we all benefit.”

~Stephanie McLean, Minister of Status of Women

“Many industries struggle to create environments where women can thrive in the workplace. We’ve learned it’s not just about tracking metrics on minority representation in a company, but bringing awareness to and confronting our own biases and acknowledging the diverse experience of others. Organizations like Next Gen Men are helping to equip our future leaders to create a more equitable work environment.”

~Mike Bader, chief technology officer, Benevity Inc.

“To transform gender inequality in this province, we need to engage men to be allies and champions of women. Because of this funding, men can participate in training and workshops that will help them be powerful agents of change.”

~Jake Stika, executive director, Next Gen Men

The grant will help participating men, such as employees at Benevity Inc., a Calgary-based technology company, create a more inclusive workplace where women are supported and championed. Next Gen Men is now offering the program to employers in Calgary.

About Status of Women grants

Status of Women’s first-ever grant program funds 33 innovative projects by not-for-profit and charitable organizations for a total of $1.5 million in the 2016-17 fiscal year.

Successful projects, such as Equity-Focused Leadership, help women get good jobs and training, and increase the number of women in leadership roles. Other grants have funded projects to prepare immigrant and Indigenous women for careers in technology and develop a peer-mentorship program for Indigenous women entrepreneurs.