What Are Women in the Workplace Actually Talking About Right Now?

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May 19, 2024 at 9:16PM UTC

The Great Resignation, The Great Regret, hybrid work, flexible working — there’s a lot going on in the world of work. The Fairygodboss community has been talking about all of it, and we’re sharing what you’re feeling and some (hopefully helpful!) career advice.

Here’s what’s trending right now — and what to do if you’re dealing with the same thing.

Discrimination in the hiring process

It’s not just interviews that lead to discrimination in the hiring process; discrimination can start before you even get to the interview. One Fairygodboss member shared her experience with a job application process that required applicants to include their college graduation year. 

“One mandatory, numeric field was ‘start date’ on your college degree. I see no reason for this question other than being a work-around to know your age. It is not legal to ask "end date" of education for that reason,” the Fairygodboss member wrote. “Is there anything I'm missing requiring the ‘start date’ of your college degree other than a sneaky approach to ageism?” 

Other members of the community weighed in with shock — most were unsure why the company would ask for a date at all, and agreed it could signal ageism. 

Here’s what to do if you’re facing this

Required fields may trigger alarm bells (“yellow flag,” anyone?), but they don’t necessarily mean you need to withdraw your application. Be direct and ask the hiring manager or interviewer about any part of the application you’re uncomfortable with to get some clarity behind their intentions. You probably don’t want to work for a company that stands by anything vaguely discriminatory, anyway. 

And if you are facing ageism, here’s some advice on how to navigate it in the job search — and how to fight back in the workplace.

The Great Regret

The Great Regret is perhaps a logical side effect of The Great Resignation: after millions of people left their jobs in hopes of greener pastures, many of those people now find themselves disliking their new roles. Almost 3 in 4 people who quit during The Great Resignation are now feeling regret. One Fairygodboss member shared her personal experience: 

“I started a new job 2 months ago and knew within a month it was a mistake. It was a career change for me, I was at another company over 15 years and was too comfortable. At this point I know I have to leave as there are indications that I will not 'make it." I am very stressed. I cannot return to my previous employer as they were upset I left even though I gave sufficient notice. How can I explain leaving a job after such little time in an interview?”

Fairygodboss members chimed in and gave advice on how to approach this situation. The overwhelming response? Be honest, and next time when you’re looking for a new company, do extensive research to really get a sense of what working there is like.  

Here’s what to do if you’re facing this

As other Fairygodboss members said — leaving a company that isn’t right for you isn’t going to set back your career. Instead, it might save everyone (even the company) some valuable time and heartburn. When you’re interviewing for your next position, be candid about why your current job isn’’t the right fit and talk about what would be the right one to ensure your next position is one you love.

And know that you’re not alone in this! Many people who quit during the Great Resignation are feeling the Great Regret and doubting themselves when it comes to making their next move. If you’re feeling regret after a career change, this advice might help — and here are some tips on how to proactively choose a company and role you’ll love.

Work Relationships

Remote work made it harder to connect with colleagues — but now that many people are back to in-person work at least sometimes, adjusting to coworker relationships has proved awkward and sometimes difficult. 

“At the end of the day, I feel really alone and like I have nowhere to go - I also just hate drama and feel like I can't talk to anyone solely because I just want the drama to stop and not perpetuate it in any way,” one Fairygodboss member shared in a post titled “I'm being bullied at work and I don't know what to do.”

She continued, “I have been applying for jobs, but it makes me sad that I'm being forced out because I like what I do, I love the team I manage (don't get me started on my fear of them going through what I went through), but at the end of the day I can tell one of us will need to leave and the VP has no intention of going anywhere. I also am just sick of having a pit in my stomach every time we have an interaction. At the end of all of this, she wins. As a black woman, this makes me feel so helpless and small.”

Here’s what to do if you’re facing this

No one wants to or should feel this way at work. Toxic environments can affect more than just your work performance — they can be emotionally draining and even make you feel stuck in your career. Quitting is always an option, but if you feel like leaving isn’t the best financial or professional choice, here’s how to protect your energy when dealing with a bad boss, and 10 ways to deal with bad behavior in the workplace.


This article reflects the views of the author and not necessarily those of Fairygodboss.

What’s the no. 1 thing on your mind at work? Share your answer in the comments and see if other Fairygodboss members can help!

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