Ms. Sixolile Ngcobo

 

Name
Ms. Sixolile Ngcobo
Degree
Bachelor of Social Sciences
Company
Commission for Gender Equality
Presentation Title
Gender and Workspaces: moving towards a high performance organisation
Content Focus Area
Organisational Level
Gender Issues
Biographical information related to the topic
I have more than 15 years of experience in the field of gender and development, where I have worked as a Gender Policy Advisor and Gender Specialists. In my years of working and have been exposed to both local and international workspace models where organisations and industry seek to maximise their talent and create a conducive environment for performance. I have conducted learning studies to the United States of America and Brazil to learn how high performing organisations create gender appropriate policies, culture and ways of working to increase job performance; reduce stress in the workplace and yet still excel in their respective industries.
My undergraduate training is in psychology and communications studies from the University of Natal (UKZN); I have been trained in Employee Wellness and health, I hold Employee Assistance Programme Short Course Certificate and the Advance Employee Assistance Programme (University of Pretoria). I am a member of EAPASA Free State Chapter. I have further postgraduate training in Duke University: Women in Leadership Programmes from the Duke University; Human Resources Management and Training Diploma (Varsity College), and Project Management Diploma, (Executive Business College) respectively.I have been working as a lead consultant for various organisations who seek to navigate gender and workspaces to put in place mechanisms that allow organisations to move towards a high performance organisation and balance the gender scales within the workforce. My current role as Provincial Manager at the Commission for Gender Equality exposes me to both government and private sector with respect to monitoring the implementation of the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998 and the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000. Both these legal frameworks are of critical importance for compliance by government and private sector as per government regulations. All my acquired experience enables me to best practise; share lessons; industry tools and models on how organisations can address gender issues at work as part of the business model that propels the organisation towards holistic excellence.
Abstract
Legal frameworks are regulated by the state and both government and private sectors are expected to comply with regulations. Complying with regulations such as the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998 and the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000 does not necessarily mean that the organisations have created conducive environments for gender transformation to flourish. Organisations need to realise that gender transformation comes with changing organisational culture, policies and ways of working to increase job performance; reduce stress in the workplace; promote diversity and inclusivity. This presentation will explore gender transformation in the workplace; gender and organisational performance; gender and stress and work life balance as key factors that influence the drive and the bottom line. The presentation will further explore the value ladder as a practical model that helps facilitate authentic transformation in organisations. The three phases of the value ladder will be discussed thus affording participants front raw opportunity to explore this transformation tool. Participants will be able to learn practical lessons on how to champion gender transformation in the workplace as part of the business model. More attention will also be given to gender diversity, motivation and job performance as building blocks for high performance organisations

For two decades, the “glass ceiling” was the defining metaphor for the failure of organizations to promote women to top leadership positions. It perfectly captured the frustration of a goal that was within sight but somehow unattainable. But times have changed, write Alice Eagly and Linda Carli, and the glass ceiling metaphor has outlived its usefulness. There is still a problem: Only 2% of Fortune 500 CEOs are women. But the glass ceiling fails to address the real roots of the issue. Eagly and Carli explain that a more fitting metaphor is the labyrinth, which acknowledges the complex challenges women face throughout their careers, such as
 resistance to their leadership styles,
 the demands of family life, and
 vestiges of prejudice at all levels.
This metaphor also implies that there is a viable way to the centre—that goals are attainable. Organizations that adopt this thinking will understand and address the barriers to women’s progress with greater success. “If one has misdiagnosed a problem,” the authors write, “then one is unlikely to prescribe an effective cure.”

Although issues of gender discrimination and Affirmative Action have attracted considerable attention the gender representation in most organisations is still very low. The essence of gender discrimination that when faced with a choice between equally qualified men and women, employers prefer to hire men and thus missing the opportunity to diversify the workforce. This results in gender discrimination mostly experienced by women and it becomes a barrier set for women only and hence women who can move beyond this barrier would do a better job on average than their male counter parts. On the hand if affirmative action is an important factor in hiring decisions the employer may set a lower barrier for women to promote gender balance.

Session Description
Gender and Workspaces: moving towards high performing organisations. Complying with regulations such as the Employment Equity Act 55 of 1998 and the Promotion of Equality and Prevention of Unfair Discrimination Act of 2000 does not necessarily mean that the organisations have created conducive environments for gender transformation to flourish. Organisations need to realise that gender transformation comes with changing organisational culture, policies and ways of working to increase job performance; reduce stress in the workplace; promote diversity and inclusivity. This workshop will equip you with the relevant information and tools you need to achieve.
Learning Objective 1
Participants will learn practical lessons on how to champion gender transformation in the workplace as part of the business model.
Learning Objective 2
Participants will demonstrate practical skills to use the three phases of the value ladder to promote gender transformation in the workplace
Learning Objective 3
Participants will demonstrate the understanding of the South African Legal frameworks that promote gender transformation and non-discriminative workspaces
Audience Level
Intermediate