How do Generation Y women see the world? Slightly more optimistically than women of older generations, says a new report.
The study, commissioned by PR firm FleishmanHillard, explores men and women's attitudes about brands, decision-making and work-life balance. Researchers conducted a three-part investigation, which included exploratory interviews with men and women, over 4,500 online surveys with participants in the U.S., France, Germany, China and Britain, and in-depth one-on-one interviews with women in the U.S. and globally.
The report offers some insights about Generation Y women, defined as those aged 21-34. Seventy percent of Gen Y women described themselves as "smart," compared to just 54 percent of Gen Y men and 60 percent of older women. This suggests that women of the Millennial generation are feeling more empowered -- or at least more willing to acknowledge their own intelligence -- than generations past.
The Millennial women surveyed were also more likely than women of other generations to see the world as gender-equal. According to a press release for the study: "More than 40 percent of women perceive equality of the sexes in the home, education, business, and society generally; nearly one-third see equality in national politics." However, despite the optimism many Gen Y women feel about the future, 90 percent of women and 75 percent of men agreed with the statement: “Men are often paid more than women, even for doing the same work."
“Globally, the study finds that women have achieved an equality of aspiration, but not an equality of results,” said Steve Kraus of the Ipsos MediaCT’s Audience Measurement Group, in a press release. Ipsos gathered the data for the study.
According to the report, "Gen Y is a truly global generation of women... shaped by shared experiences of technology, social media, emerging brands, and the cultural narrative that preached 'girls can do anything boys can do.'” And previous research on Millennial women has found that they are using these "shared experiences" to demand greater flexibility at work and in their home lives. These young professionals are ambitious, don't see their gender as a major hindrance to their success and refuse to sacrifice their overall well-being in the process.
The takeaway? Generation Y women are the ones to watch. According to a press release: "She’s here. She’s in charge. Get used to it. She certainly is. (Men are still adapting). And she’s doing it without compromising her identity."
You go, girl(s).