Generational Evolution: Gen Y Women Feel Potential – and Pressure
The "Battle of the Sexes" is becoming a foreign concept for Gen Y women around the world, who perceive greater gender equality in skills, opportunities and accomplishments, shaped by being raised with a "girls can do anything boys can do" attitude. For example, post-Title IX (the educational amendment prohibiting sex discrimination) in the U.S., 70 percent of Gen Y women surveyed describe themselves as "smart," compared to only 54 percent of Gen Y men. That gender gap shrinks among Gen Xers (women 63 percent/men 55 percent), and disappears among boomers (57 for both women and men). The downside of higher expectations is the demanding climb to succeed. American Gen Y women are most inclined to describe themselves as "stressed" (40 percent) and "exhausted" (29 percent).
More Gender Equality, But Not Equal Pay
"Globally, the study finds that women have achieved an equality of aspiration, but not an equality of results," said Dr.
, senior vice president and chief insights officer of Ipsos MediaCT's Audience Measurement Group. "She is the CEO of most households, and few would tell her that she can't aspire to be the CEO of a corporation. But she realizes that she faces an uphill battle."
In each of the five countries surveyed, more than 80 percent of women agree, "Men are often paid more than women, even for doing the same work," and about half agree that many men resent the advancements women have made in recent years. Overall, women see themselves as stronger than men in areas of "emotional strength," such as having difficult conversations or rebounding from setbacks, and acknowledge that men often have more success in negotiating and proactively asking for salary increases. Interestingly, Gen Y women tend to see more gender equality in all of these areas.