What kind of workplace will our daughters inherit?

It’s up to us. This Valentine’s Day, let’s commit to making a difference.

Valentine’s Day brings to mind all the ways that we can show the people in our lives how much we appreciate and care for them. Two of the people on the top of my list this year are my daughter, Heather, and my new granddaughter, Harlyn. These two are very often front and center in my efforts to engage men in women’s leadership advancement in corporate America.

With the work I do at YWomen, I’m constantly thinking about all that still needs to be done to achieve women’s equity in the workplace. For years, I’ve been advocating that it’s time to stop trying to “fix” women by providing them with one more training program, and instead take a closer look at the strategy, culture and the role of male engagement that is required to achieve gender equity within organizations.

This Valentine’s Day, I’m reflecting on the future and thinking about how to leverage the momentum and conversations that are finally taking place. I’m asking myself and my clients these important questions:

  • What kind of workplace will our children inherit?
  • Are we really okay with leaving a workplace that pays our daughters 79 cents for every dollar it pays our sons (or 54 cents and 63 cents if our daughters are Hispanic/Latina or Black/African American, respectively)?
  • Will our sons and daughters have equitable opportunities to advance in careers they are passionate about?
  • Today, only 5 percent of CEOs worldwide are women, a number that has not appreciably budged in 10 years. What can we do now to move the needle?
  • What will be the long-term effects on our children of #MeToo, #TimesUp, and #MentorHer?

It’s time for men—all men—to stand up and take action … for our mothers, sisters, co-workers, daughters and granddaughters.

What can you do?

A few months ago, Adam Penaflorida of Leadercast inspired me to kick off the YWomen Father of Daughter (FOD) Facebook page. After I spoke at a Leadercast employee session, Adam posted this adorable picture of his daughter and this message:

“Women hold less than 5 percent of CEO roles worldwide. As a father to this beautiful 1-year-old, this is simply unacceptable! If we do not advocate for this change now, what kind of world will we leave for those to come?”

Since its launch, our Facebook page has featured some photos and quotes from proud dads (and moms!) who are committed to ensuring a more equitable workplace (and world!) for their daughters.

One thing you can do today is take the Father of a Daughter or the Women Championing Women pledge. These pledges include simple, actionable steps you can take to support women in the workplace. Take a selfie with your signed pledge and post it to our Facebook page!

Take action today

It’s Valentine’s Day. This year, in addition to giving the usual gifts of flowers and candy, let’s commit to taking actions that will make a difference to the women and girls in our lives. That’s a gift with long-lasting impact. #FatherofDaughter #YWomen

Jeffery Tobias Halter the country’s leading expert on engaging men to advance women and frequently speaks at industry and corporate events. He is the President of YWomen, a strategic consulting company that helps organizations create Integrated Women’s Leadership Strategies, drive actionable business plans and strategies to attract, retain and advance women and address gender bias in the workplace. To begin conversations about gender, diversity and cultivating male allies, subscribe to his Gender Conversation QuickStarters newsletter.