Contrary to popular belief, women do not lack career ambition

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    Globally, women represent around half of the workforce, according to figures from the International Labor Organization. Although progress has been made, women still struggle to access higher positions and salaries. However, it is not the desire that they lack, according to a recent US survey.

    Nearly 90% of women surveyed in the latest edition of CNBC and SurveyMonkey’s annual Women at Work survey* say they have ambitions. However, far fewer are satisfied with their professional lives.

    Women often suffer professional harm

    Working women regret that their remuneration is not higher. Just under four in ten respondents got a pay rise in 2023, up from 44% the previous year. Worse yet, 17% say it has even fallen in a year. This phenomenon is all the more alarming as women are traditionally overrepresented in the lowest paid professions. Therefore, they are structurally more exposed to poverty than men.

    In addition to being at a wage disadvantage, women are also at a disadvantage when it comes to obtaining promotion. Only 20% say their career has progressed in 2023. By contrast, 18% say they have regressed professionally in the past year.

    Less affected by exhaustion

    What is most encouraging is that almost a quarter of women say they have managed to better balance their professional and private lives. This is good news when we know how important it is to find the right balance between these two spheres to preserve our physical and mental health.

    Letting work encroach too much into your personal life increases the risk of stress, anxiety, and even burnout. Fortunately, women seem less affected by professional burnout than before: 45% of them say they “rarely” or “never” feel in this state. A figure that rises four points compared to 2022.

    However, these few advances are not enough to solve all the problems that women face in the world of work. Some try to remedy this by leaving their job, hoping to find another one that better meets their salary expectations and puts them under less pressure. But they do not always achieve this, which contributes to further accentuate gender inequalities in terms of professional development and income.

    *The 2024 edition of CNBC and SurveyMonkey’s annual “Women at Work” survey It took place from February 23 to March 4 among 19,743 Americans, including 9,786 women.

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