Supporting the wellbeing of women is paramount for fostering a thriving, inclusive workplace. As we approach International Women’s Day on March 8th, it’s crucial to acknowledge and address the unique health and wellbeing challenges women often encounter in both their professional and personal lives, so we can better support the women in our lives. 

The Dual Challenges of Women’s Wellbeing: Balancing Personal and Professional Realities 

Navigating the intricacies of personal and professional life can be particularly challenging for women. From juggling caregiving responsibilities to facing careers pressures in the workplace, women often encounter unique stressors that can impact their overall wellbeing. The pressure to excel in both realms while managing societal expectations i.e. ‘can she have it all’, can lead to increased levels of stress, anxiety, and burnout. Recognising and addressing these challenges is essential for creating a supportive and inclusive workplace environment. 

Mental Health Support 

In Australia, 1 in 6 women will experience depression and 1 in 3 will experience anxiety during their lifetime. This chance is increased during pregnancy and in the year after pregnancy. Poor mental health not only impacts a woman’s personal life, but it also impacts productivity, absenteeism and presenteeism within the workplace.  

Furthermore, according to Deloitte’s Women @ Work: A Global Outlook, women continue to feel uncomfortable discussing their mental and personal health challenges in the workplace, with many suffering in silence. 40% report working through pain or symptoms related to menstruation and 20% work through symptoms related to menopause. 

Leaders and Managers should conduct regular check-ins with female employees to understand their challenges. This ultimately fosters a culture of open communication and shows a commitment to individual growth. Beyond this, a proactive employee mental health and wellbeing strategy is vital in order to support all employees. According to Comcare, organisations that prioritise physical and mental health in their wellbeing programs observe a decrease in sick leave, absenteeism, and increased productivity across all employees. 

Work-Life Balance as a Cornerstone 

Recent trends indicate a concerning rise in women leaving their jobs, surpassing the cumulative figures of 2021 and 2020. A lack of flexibility ranks high among the reasons cited. The struggle to manage time between work and family responsibilities often leads women to place their wellbeing on the back burner.  

Organisations can actively contribute to the solution by encouraging women to prioritise their health and wellbeing through flexible work arrangements, with hybrid working models emerging as particularly positive experiences. Flexible working hours or remote work options empower women to manage their professional and personal commitments more efficiently. This flexibility not only enhances work-life balance but also contributes to increased job satisfaction and overall wellbeing. 

Equal Opportunities and Recognition 

Creating a workplace culture that values diversity and ensures equal opportunities is foundational to women’s wellbeing. Research shows that women working for Gender Equality Leaders experience higher engagement, greater wellbeing, and increased job satisfaction.  

Encouraging women to participate in decision-making processes and providing platforms for their voices to be heard is a crucial step. Establishing Employee Resource Groups (ERGs) that focus on gender equality allows women to connect, share experiences, and collaborate on initiatives that promote inclusivity. HR can also play a role in ensuring that company policies and practices are inclusive, considering the unique needs and challenges that women may face.  

Recognising and celebrating cultural and gender diversity through events, initiatives, and awareness campaigns fosters an environment where everyone feels seen, heard, and appreciated. Ultimately, a workplace that actively promotes inclusion not only benefits the wellbeing of women but contributes to a more engaged and high-performing workforce. 

Investing in Women’s Wellbeing is Investing in Your Company’s Success 

At Better Being, we believe in empowering organisations to create workplaces where every employee can thrive. Our wellbeing programs are designed with the latest research in mind, ensuring that your employees receive the support they need to excel both personally and professionally. 

Invest in the wellbeing of your female employees today and watch as your company reaps the benefits of a happier, healthier, and more engaged workforce. Learn more about our wellbeing programs here.