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The Golden Globe Awards Ceremony is always fun to watch, but I especially loved this year’s broadcast because of one incredibly powerful and inspiring moment. With millions of people watching, as Regina King accepted her award for best supporting actress, she chose to use this important moment to address a systemic issue felt in Hollywood and across the country. That issue is gender equality.

Let’s Get Specific

The struggle for gender equality is one found in nearly every industry, not just in Hollywood. Any sector need only look in its backyard to find the statistics that prove there’s a problem and that more awareness is needed. Staffing is no different:

  • Nearly half of all recruiters say men are still being paid more than women for the same quality and quantity of work.
  • Only 30% of recruiters hire with gender diversity in mind.
  • Over 25% of recruiters have heard of instances of sexual harassment at their companies in the last two years.

Saddening figures like this are prevalent throughout society and make what Regina King said ever more important. However, what really grabbed my attention in her speech was how she went one step beyond awareness. It’s common for a celebrity to use a major awards ceremony platform to shed light on an injustice, but it’s rare for them to take a stand. Regina did so and made a specific pledge.

She promised that everything she produces will be staffed by 50% women. Furthermore, she asked anyone in a position of power from any industry to challenge themselves, stand with her in solidarity, and make the same commitment. She recognizes that while Hollywood often lives in a bubble, the issue she sees is one that permeates our country. The key difference is that the majority of women overlooked for jobs are people who don’t have such big platforms. Their voices aren’t heard; their faces aren’t recognized from magazine covers. Regina knew that, and spoke to everyone, not just those in the room.

Let’s Accept the Challenge

It’s critical for business leaders, hiring managers, and others to recognize the gravity of this moment and not stay silent. We must respond to and accept Regina’s challenge without delay. Anyone who has the power to hire can have a direct and positive effect on this issue and can inspire competitors, peers, and friends to pursue the same equality in their own everyday life.

I accept Regina’s challenge to continue to make gender equality a focus for ATR International.

As the leader of a major staffing firm, I strive to set the example for others in our industry. ATR may be a female-owned company with a staff already made up of over 50% women, but the majority of businesses are not. As we move forward, ATR will do more than just ensure a balanced workforce. For example, when we need outside supplies or services, we will also make sure female-led companies are equally considered and utilized.

Applying Regina King’s logic to every area of our business is how to bring real change to our industry and the people affected by it. Mentalities like hers are what cause the tides to change. That same night at the Golden Globes, a brand-new lifetime achievement award was given out and named after a woman, legendary comedian Carol Burnett. That alone gives me hope and indicates another parallel with the staffing industry, which is also seeing more female-focused awards such as the SIA Global Power 150 – Women in Staffing list. The more gender equality is recognized, discussed, and acted upon, the more we will see positive storylines like we are today.

Let’s Bring Equality to the World

We can’t all be Golden Globe winning celebrities, but we can all use our platforms and voices to make a difference. I urge my staffing industry peers to follow suit and accept Regina King’s challenge. Together we can realize gender equality in staffing, and eventually, the world.

ATR is strongly committed to gender equality and diversity. Whether you’re a business or job seeker, if you’d like to work with a company determined to be on the right side of history, contact us here.

 

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