Friday, 30 May 2014

Gender Differences and Equality at Work – Sales Survey 2014

Aaron Wallis has recently undertaken the largest sales survey of its type which explores changing trends within the industry as well as a powerful insight into the minds of sales professionals.

With 62 questions answered by 726 completely anonymous sales professionals we have captured some impressive results helping us promote professional sales, raise awareness and gain a firmer understanding on how to succeed in sales teams.

Over the course of the next couple of weeks I will be extracting information from the survey and posting them on the Aaron Wallis blog.

To receive a full free copy of the 2014 UK Sales Survey please follow this link – 2014 UK Sales Survey Report

Out of the 726 participants for the 2014 Sales Survey, a quite surprising amount, 595 people (82%) were male, 123 people (17%) were female and only seven people (1%) didn’t wish to disclose their gender.

Gender is often a controversial subject with women stereotyped as terrible drivers and men being generalized as incapable of paying attention to the tiniest of details. The truth is: males and females are as dreadful as each other and, equally, just as good as one another! 

In the modern workplace, both women and men should be considered and respected equally for job opportunities but sadly that isn't the case. Even though women’s rights became more prominent during the 50s, the hourly pay rate was, and still is, considerably different. Men are awarded more than their female colleagues, even if they aren't pulling as much weight at their job, but it seems that the Y chromosome is still the bread-winner. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel as it is speculated that a female’s full-time salary will soon be equivalent to male’s earnings.  However, it is projected that this won’t be until 2040!

Some employees feel there is quite a lot of unfairness and prejudice against their gender, age or ethnicity, and it wasn't until 2010 that full equality legislation was introduced in the 2010 Equality Act, allowing the workplace to be less discriminatory. While, of course, the occasional sexist comment is still made, most employees are pleased with the 2010 act, and it gives women and men equal prospects to undertake the roles of jobs that were once considered male or female dominated. After all, the Vicar of Dibley managed to work exceedingly well in a male orientated role! Unfortunately, for some who have experienced a form of direct or indirect discrimination, this gives a large disadvantage to those who are currently working in the job or who are job seeking and often feel that they are not appreciated for their hard efforts.

·      29% of the participants experienced some form of discrimination, whilst they were searching for a job.
·      Almost half of the employees (49%) felt that they didn’t receive the pay that fairly reflected their work.
·      32% of workers feel that their work goes unrewarded or they don’t receive the recognition, or respect, they feel they should have done.
·      11% have waved good-bye to their old jobs in order to get the respect they think they truly deserve. ‘Out with the old and in with the new’ to a more appreciative employer!

Gender discrimination is a big issue but how about the age? When is the best age to start in sales? Would a young adult be too inexperienced and create annoyance in the workplace by asking thousands of questions to their senior peers or will an older person be ‘too set in their old ways’ and wonder what these social networking sites are? There are many questions, but it seems that the phrase ‘you can’t teach an old dog new tricks’ applies to, well, dogs as sales employees can start at any time; it’s all about the know-how and expertise and not the age.

Most people agree that age doesn’t matter, and that you can start at any time. In fact, more than half (54%) agreed on this where 21% believed it was better to start at the age of 21; 12% think older, 7% think 18 and 6% feel that 16 is the best age to start.

Written by Liam Oakes
Liam is the Office Manager at Aaron Wallis and has been with the company for 3 years after having a career with the RAF; Liam has helped hundreds of Sales Professionals secure a new Sales role and ensures that Aaron Wallis runs smoothly.

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