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The gender gap in workplace burnout is getting wider

The latest Women in the Workplace report from McKinsey & Company and LeanIn.org reveals some alarming trends.

The gender gap in workplace burnout is getting wider
[Source Photo: Sarah Chai/Pexels]

Given the dumpster fire that was 2020, and the uncertainty about where work will get done after 18 months of the pandemic, is it any wonder that workers are more burned out than ever? What is perhaps more disturbing is that the seventh annual Women in the Workplace report from McKinsey & Company and LeanIn.org reveals that the gender gap in burnout is getting wider.

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This year, 42% of women and 35% of men say they’re burned out, in comparison to 32% and 28%, respectively, in 2020. And in terms of representation among workers, the broken rung on the ladder still exists: For every 100 men promoted to manager, only 86 women are promoted. This is an improvement from the pre-COVID work landscape in 2019 when only 72 women were promoted to or hired for manager for every 100 men.

The report draws on data from 423 organizations with a collective workforce of 12 million people, and surveys with more than 65,000 employees. Among the other notable findings:

  • Female senior leaders are 24% more likely than their male counterparts to ensure their teams’ workload is manageable, and 60% more likely to provide emotional support to their teams.
  • Approximately one in five female senior leaders spends a substantial amount of time on DEI work that is not central to their job, compared to less than one in ten men at the same level.
  • One in three women considered downshifting/leaving/or switching jobs in the past year, up from one in four at the beginning of the pandemic.
  • Despite a 27% gain in female representation overall at the C-suite level, women of color make up just 4% at that place in the hierarchy (compared to 13% men of color).
  • Women of color are, by and large, experiencing the same microaggressions, relative to white women, at similar frequencies, as they were two years ago.
  • Compared to last year, the gap between white employees seeing themselves as allies of women of color, and those taking action has grown.

You can read the full report here.

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About the author

Lydia Dishman is a reporter writing about the intersection of tech, leadership, and innovation. She is a regular contributor to Fast Company and has written for CBS Moneywatch, Fortune, The Guardian, Popular Science, and the New York Times, among others.

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