The identified limitations of the gender-neutral approach are important, given the important role that gender bias within organisations and society can play in creating larger degrees of gender stereotypes, creating further issues for women in employment. These issues can include pressure to behave in a more masculine manner, or to avoid competing for top jobs, and thus are vital to understand given the important role of gender in social structures, and how this can be influenced by gender issues within employment (Britton and Logan, 2008). In particular, the social standing of a man is often linked to their progress within organisations, and their ability to develop their wealth and image within communities. As such, the greater the gender divide within organisations, the greater the focus on men as being the main bread winners and source of wealth creation, regardless of the social arguments around this view being outdated and archaic. This hence links gender discrimination to contemporary neoliberal doctrines around the value of work and economic competitiveness ahead of personal outcomes (Gambles et al, 2006). This focus in turn increases levels of gender inequality, as efforts to overcome bias and discrimination are seen to reflect a desire to put soft social goals ahead of hard economic ones, thus being undesirable and potentially harming economic growth (Annesley and Scheele, 2011). This hence demonstrates how male dominance of many organisations perpetuates gender stereotypes and barriers, thus creating further inequality of outcomes.
The ongoing inequality of outcomes has further implications for social conditioning, and how individual women look to engage with managers and other important people with organisations. Specifically, the gender structures in many societies and businesses act to limit the ability of women to rely on legislation and the legal rights they enjoy to equality, through a process of stigmatising women who fall back on legal institutions. This results in women being forced to attempt to achieve equality through individual efforts including negotiating meanings and values in an effort to overcome gender based barriers within individual organisations (Porter, 2012). Encouraging managers and organisations to value the skills and capabilities that women can bring to the organisation alongside men can facilitate this process. However, this process can also result in the creation of token opportunities for women, which act to encourage more subtle forms of discrimination and gender bias, limiting the ability of women to engage with organisations on a deeper level. This in turn can cause women to engage in "auto stereotyping", where they believe that they have to act in a certain way to access these opportunities, or others available in the organisation (Hutchings et al, 2013). This in turn acts to reinforce barriers and structures hindering the ability of women to enjoy equal opportunities without having to change their behaviour to conform to masculine ideas about employment and worker’s identities.
Again, the above issues are particularly pronounced within more gendered environments, including highly gendered industries or organisations in which there is a range of barriers to women succeeding. One such example is within the financial services industries, which are similarly high pressure industries to the legal industry discussed earlier. In these industries, women tend to be viewed as being less effective than men, with efforts to push themselves forwards using similar tactics to their male counterparts leading to them being stereotyped as being aggressive, irrational or domineering (Czarniawska, 2008). This is also an issue for female leaders, with Ely et al (2011, p. 274) arguing, "Subtle forms of gender bias in the culture and in organizations interfere with the identity work of women leaders", hindering the development of women as a whole. Indeed, the outcome of this tends to be that women are forced to display masculine leadership behaviours such as aggression and decisiveness, even if these are not “natural” characteristics for the specific leader, which in turn, serves to reinforce gender bias and barriers to women as a group (Liu, 2013).
Women and pregnancy and women health in Saudi society