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Most Women Don't Feel Workplace Gender Bias

Most Women Don't Feel Workplace Gender Bias Credit: Young employee image via Shutterstock

The majority of women don't feel their gender is holding them back from advancing professionally, new research shows.

A study by Gallup discovered that just 15 percent of U.S. working women feel they have been passed over for a promotion or opportunity at work because of their gender, with 13 percent feeling the same about salary increases.

"The data reveal that most women do not perceive that they have been a victim of gender bias at work when it comes to promotions and raises in particular," wrote Elizabeth Mendez, Gallup deputy managing editor.

The research found that these perceptions are similar by age, educational attainment and employment in a professional or nonprofessional job, however, differences based on political beliefs do exist. 

The Republican and conservative women studied were slightly less likely than all other groups of women to feel they have been passed over for a promotion or raise due to their gender, while liberal female employees were the only group to perceive more gender discrimination.

"These findings reveal that there may be some political or ideological issues at play in perceptions of gender fairness in the workplace," Mendez wrote.

Despite the majority of women feeling their gender hasn't played a role in hampering their career advancement opportunities, it is still a larger percentage than the number of men who felt the same way.

Only 8 percent of working men think their gender has prevented them from getting a promotion, with just 4 percent believing they have been denied a raise for the same reason.

Mendez said this phenomenon is something that disproportionately affects women.

"As the media and Americans in general continue to debate the topic of women in the workplace, Gallup's data show that some women do feel they are facing unfair treatment in the workplace because of their gender, and that gender bias at work, though relatively uncommon in an absolute sense, is more likely to negatively affect working women than working men," Mendez wrote in the research.

The study was based on surveys of more than 1,000 U.S. adults who were employed full or part time.

Chad Brooks

Chad Brooks is a Chicago-based writer who has nearly 15 years' experience in the media business. A graduate of Indiana University, he spent nearly a decade as a staff reporter for the Daily Herald in suburban Chicago, covering a wide array of topics including, local and state government, crime, the legal system and education. Following his years at the newspaper Chad worked in public relations, helping promote small businesses throughout the U.S. Follow him on Twitter.