Working Girl Turns 25 and Women Feel Not Much has Changed

Three-quarters of respondents agree that women still need to work much harder than men to get ahead: poll

TORONTO, Dec. 16, 2013 /CNW/ - Big shoulder pads and big hair were all the rage when the movie Working Girl debuted in 1988. Twenty-five years later the fashion has changed, but like the film's lead character Tess McGill, many women still feel they need to work harder than men to get ahead in the workplace. According to a recent poll by, 44% of women (and 28% of men) believe that nothing has changed in 25 years, in terms of women still needing to fight harder for opportunities.

A Double Standard?

The poll also revealed that eight out of ten (81%) of female respondents believe that women need to prove they have superior skills and experience to compete with men when applying for jobs. Similarly, most women regard leadership positions as elusive, with 74% of agreeing that although it is more common for women to be in leadership positions than 25 years ago, they still need to work much harder than men to get ahead.

"While none of jobs currently listed on excludes females from applying our poll shows women still feel considerably disadvantaged compared to their male counterparts when it comes to career advancement," says Sheryl Boswell, Director, Marketing, "Many women face the challenge of balancing work and family life, and the rise of the female breadwinner in some households adds even more pressure."

Do Men Rule the Workforce?

Almost three-quarters of respondents (72%) agree with the statement "there are career options for women, but men still dominate the workforce." Those 55+ are more likely to agree (82%) compared to those ages 18-34 (66%). When asked which industries are dominated by men, respondents commonly listed: STEM sectors (science, technology, engineering, mathematics), finance and medicine.

Those that have been in the workforce over the last 25 years may be more pessimistic than Gen Yers, but change is in the air. According to Statistics Canada's report "Changing labour market conditions for young Canadians 2012", women ages 25-34 had more favourable employment outcomes in 2012 than did their counterparts in 1981, whereas men ages 25-34 living in non-oil-producing provinces had lower employment outcomes in 2012 than in 1981. Similarly, notwithstanding the perception by some that medicine is a male-dominated sector, women now outnumber men in Canadian medical schools.

Celebrate Your Accomplishments

"As Working Girl celebrates its 25th Anniversary, we urge Canadian women to look ahead with optimism and ambition," Boswell concludes. "And to those women whose current employers aren't offering the opportunity to advance, we say it might be time to find better with"

About the Survey
A survey of 1500 Canadians was completed online between November 12 and November 14, 2013 using Leger's online panel, LegerWeb. A probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of +/- 2.5%, 19 times out of 20.

About Monster
Monster Worldwide, Inc. (NYSE: MWW), is the global leader in successfully connecting job opportunities and people. Monster uses the world's most advanced technology to help people Find Better, matching job seekers to opportunities via digital, social and mobile solutions including®, and employers to the best talent using a vast array of products and services. As an Internet pioneer, more than 200 million people have registered on the Monster Worldwide network. Today, with operations in more than 40 countries, Monster provides the broadest, most sophisticated job seeking, career management, recruitment and talent management capabilities globally. For more information, visit

SOURCE: Monster

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Katie O'Dell

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