4 Reasons Why Women Should Consider The Skilled Trades

Why women should consider the skilled tradesThere is often a stereotypical image associated with trades’ workers that involves a male in a hardhat. This stereotype prevails in part because skilled female tradespeople make up only about 5% of employed tradespeople, according to Talent Egg. Despite this, there are many reasons why women with an interest in the skilled trades and hands-on work should still pursue a career in this industry.

Here are the top 4 reasons why women should consider a career in the skilled trades:

1. Many traditionally male professions are increasing in popularity with female workers.

Since the mid 20th century, society has seen an increase in the types of jobs women are taking on. However, the last couple of decades show that there still remain male dominated and female dominated professions. But some jobs that have been traditionally male dominated are now leaning the other way. For example, Forbes writes that in the accounting field, women make up more than 60% of three categories of positions: accountants and auditors, tax preparers, and tax examiners and collectors. With this influx of women into new positions, we can hope that this will further increase their presence in other professions, included skilled trade jobs, which would have seemed out of reach in the past.

2. Women are being offered equal compensation for skilled trades today as opposed to the past.

Equal pay for equal work has been and continues to be a struggle women face. Although the Equal Pay Act of 1963 sought to suppress wage disparity among the sexes, wage discrimination has continued in many sectors into the modern day. According to RSI, while women make up on 9% of all construction workers, they make a little over the median wage for all employed in construction. As other industries are following suit, women are seeing more and more doors of opportunity opening for them.

3. Broadening the employment mindset between male/female professions is a good example to younger women and girls.

Even when young people do not realize it, they are absorbing the examples they see around them, and these example shape their ideas about society and socially acceptable choices. This is true in gender roles in the workplace as well. Even though research supports the idea that there are no significant differences in male/female ability in any given field, perceived competence in individuals begins to develop at age five in most children, according to The Huffington Post Girls in STEM Blog. This perceived competence will follow a female through her entire life and it is based upon beliefs of whether or not a job, talent or profession is appropriate for a girl. So by being a part of the skilled trades workforce, you’re showing other girls that this is an acceptable career path for them, should they choose it.

4. Women talented in a skilled trade should feel free to pursue that as a career despite social stigma.

If women hold only 5% of the skilled trades jobs, there are likely many talented women with this skill or aptitude who do not pursue that career path because of lack of confidence. Ever expanding social ideas concerning male/female gender roles in the workplace are opening new doors for women, but it is confidence that will take women the rest of the way to pursue careers that they desire.


Want my BEST tips?

I just opened a new "career hacks" Facebook group where I'm going to share my best tips and resources for getting job offers, negotiate a higher salary, and much more. You can also get ANY question answered (I'm in there every day). Interested? join here.

Leave a Comment:

TyroneWilliams says December 9, 2015

The best skilled trades for women are truck driver and CNC machinist. Other than that skilled trades require strength which most women don’t posses unless they are bodybuilders. I am a union representative for the Iron workers and women don’t do it here. Better stick to machining ladies.

Leo says February 26, 2016

It wasn’t at first only men were nurses unlses you were talking about taking care of someone at home. Between Florence Nightengale Who proved that women could nurse other’s out side of her family and that it wasn’t seen as a social sitgma to see other’s in a unclothed state. A lot of society’s idea were realted to how they felt about sex. It’ wasn’t consider proper for a woman to see a male outside of his family with out his clothes. Women weren’t thought to be strong enough to deal with the more messy parts of nursing and taking care of truly sick people out side of their own families. When Florence Nightingale changed the way that women nurses were viewed in England Clara Barton was doing the same thing here in the state during the Civil war. Clara Barton started the American Red Cross Which started out as women responding to the battle fields during the Civil war due to the shortage of men to do it. So it’s only been in the last 170 years that women were the primary nurses. Before that when nurses were called for outside of the home it was men who did it if it was done at all.You also have to remember that very little nursing was done out side of the home, The hospitals were for the dirt poor who had no homes and no where else to go. That was one of the reasons that the care was so poor and almost non exsistant.It wasn’t until the early 1900 s that hospitals were used for the majority of people and that only became possible when medical science started to have machines and procedures that couldn’t be done at home. As more wealthy people started going to the hospitals and as medical science improved the quality of care rose and more people used the hospitals, This gave rise to the need to have people in the hospitals when the doctor’s weren’t there to provide the round the clock care needed. This is also one reason that nursing became more open to women. Since they weren’t paid as much as doctors most men didn’t want the job and it gave women another way to support themselves rather than doing domestic work. Also since medical school was still hard for women to get into for women interested in medicine it was a start.

Add Your Reply