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“T eaching men in the industry how to involve us and trust us to do the same work. Teaching men how to accommodate women in this


industry. Being given more administrative


tasks automatically.” 


“I have the same opportunities as men in the industry.”


“Being who I am.” 


“Having to prove 


yourself more than a male.”


“Being flexible and able to communicate professionally but impactfully.”





“Being a professional ... no different than a man working in the industry.”





“Being part of a team and given equal opportunity for advancement.”





“Being viewed as equally capable as your male peers, but understanding you will have to work





twice as hard to be seen as equal.”


“Not being 


something I’m not. I am a woman. I work hard. I show up on time. I pull my weight.”


“I have accomplished something that not very many women have.”


 “I’m a r  ole model for


girls and young women who would like to pursue a non-traditional career.”


HOW TO BE A


MALE ADVOCATE Guys, this one’s for you. On board with all we’ve discussed in this article? Great! Here are some steps you can take to advocate for your female coworkers, bosses, employees, etc., as advised by our interviewees:





Get to know your female coworkers, what their issues are, and what they would like from you. Talk to them. Ask questions about what they experience at work.


 


Advocate for equal pay and equitable treatment of all employees within your organization.


If you see other men speaking about or treating a woman co-worker unprofession- ally – stand up for that woman and ask those men to behave professionally.





Try to be conscious of inherent bias, and work to empathize with and appreciate how women may feel in a given situation.


WOMAN-TO-WOMAN ADVICE:


“Choose a company that has a culture of inclusion and where you feel welcomed right from the start.” —Jennifer Lemcke


ly benefit from all coworkers, male and female, learning about gender inequities and raising awareness of the issues. Men, in particular, can help to advocate for women among male coworkers.


“Support of male team members can make a significant difference in setting an example and tone for other men within an organization on how to treat and talk to women coworkers as well as how to talk about women in general around coworkers,” Hughes says. “Frankly, if someone is doing their job and is a valuable team member, they should be recognized and supported by other team members, regardless of their gender. However, I know from experience that a male mentor can facilitate group acceptance and professional respect of a woman team member by treating that woman as an equal.”


Men can advocate by using their


voices, or by helping to influence change, both in companies and across the landscape industry. Even if it’s not a problem at a particular company, recognizing that gender is still an issue industry-wide is step one. “Each woman is an individual with a set of individual skills, talents, per- sonality traits, professional goals and qualifications for the landscape career of their choice,” Hughes says. “Con- sider how the landscape industry can address the need for appropriately sized/fitted uniforms and equipment and a means for female employees to go to the bathroom while on job sites or at work—apparently, this issue is not just a landscape industry problem; even NASA can’t get it right.”


As more attention is drawn to the issue of diversity and inclusion of all kinds, gender discrimination in particu- lar, change is starting to happen. “While the industry is still predom- inantly male, we are now at a place where we realize this is a missed opportunity we should be taking ad- vantage of,” Key says. “This is just the beginning. I see the future of the land- scape industry benefiting from a wealth of diversity, especially from women.” TLP


EDITOR’S NOTE: NALP is forming a Women in Land- scape Council to enable networking, engagement and to help recruit female professionals in the lawn and landscape industry. For more information or to inquire about joining, contact Jenn Myers at jenn@landscapeprofessionals.org.


HOW MANY WOMEN WORK IN THE TYPICAL LANDSCAPE COMPANY? WHAT PERCENT OF YOUR COMPANY IS MADE UP OF FEMALE EMPLOYEES?


49% - 0%-5% 23% - 6%-10% 12% - 11%-20% 8% - 21%-30% 4% - 31%-40% 2% - 41%-50% 2% - More than 50%


National Association of Landscape Professionals 27


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