Status of women and gender diversity in the hospitality and tourism sector has been a concern among both academicians and practitioners. Maintenance of diversity at the workplace has emerged as one of the biggest challenges for the managers in tourism sector for fulfilling all the aims and objectives in an effective way. Over the past few years, there has been significant progress with respect to women reducing the gender gap in different position at hospitality industry (Madera, Dawson & Neal, 2013). In fact, gender based discrimination has been regarded as the form of sex discrimination within the tourism and hospitality industry. Still, the male employees have dominated several positions in tourism and hospitality sector. The essay aims to analyze the significance of including gender diversity in hospitality sector. It will focus on assessing the kind of positive impact inclusion of female employee can have on the tourism and hospitality sector. On the other hand, the essay will also look to highlight the amount of challenges tourism and hospitality sector have to face due to improper use of gender diversity.
Over the past few decades, tourism and hospitality sector have achieved immense growth in the global market. Increasing income level of the people has also increased the amount of money invested into different luxurious activities. Recent survey has highlighted the fact that around $60 million tourists visited Australia from different parts of the world last year. It is around 27% higher than five years prior (Duncan, Scott & Baum, 2013). Therefore, it has increased the significance of maintaining workforce diversity for handling the people from different geographical region. Hospitality and tourism sector have to deal with people from diverse culture, values and ethics. For that reason, inclusion of female employees allows organizations to deal with people from different cultural background. Tourism involves movement of people from their general surroundings to other places within or outside the country. For that reason, organizations in the tourism and hospitality sector need to focus on providing proper support and service facilities. As per the World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC), tourism and hospitality sector will create around 70 million jobs opportunity in next decade (Wttc.org, 2017). The tourism sector is expanding on an average 6.5% per year, which will increase the value of tourism and hospitality sector. In present times, around 70% of the total workforce in hospitality and tourism sector is women (Altinay, Paraskevas & Jang, 2015). Therefore, the female employees perform majority of the responsibilities related to the hospitality and tourism sector.
The 2015 report of WTTC has highlighted consequences of talent imbalances on the overall performance level of the organizations (Wttc.org, 2017). Specifically, inclusion of women in the managerial position has helped the hospitality and tourism sector to become more dynamic to handle increasing pressure of tourists. Inclusion of women has helped organizations to keep the motivational level of the employees at the desired level. Without proper support from all the employees, it will be very difficult for any organization to keep the satisfaction level of the customers at the desired level. It has also helped organizations from hospitality and tourism sector to provide more support and facilities to all the employees, which is likely to keep the motivational level of the employees. As per the article by Kapiki (2012), inclusion of women in the leadership roles has allowed the organizations to work with diverse aims and objectives. Almost all the prime organizations have able to increase the sales volume in continues manner. Effective use of gender diversity has helped to enhance the satisfaction level of the customers, which has created direct impact on the employee turnover rate. It has been assessed that effective use of women employees has reduced the employee turnover rate by up to 22% in Australia. Therefore, it is also expected to create positive impact on the overall performance level of the organizations dealing in the hospitality and tourism sector. For that reason, it can be mentioned that effective use of female employees in the hospitality and tourism sector will increase the business level even further.
As per the article by Obrador (2012), above-mentioned advantages have induced organizations to use more female employees for fulfilling the responsibilities of the operational process. On the other hand, improper use of female employees can actually affect the overall operational process of the employees. Firstly, biased recruitment process can encourage organizations to avoid specific gender regardless of talents. Therefore, it might affect the overall talent and skill level of the organizations, which will affect the performance level of the operational process. As highlighted by Sourouklis and Tsagdis (2013) around 78% of the unskilled labours are women in the hospitality and tourism industry. Therefore, organizations will face immense challenges in identifying suitable talents for performing daily work activities. Moreover, it will allow other organizations to use the opportunity of recruiting effective talents for the gaining competitive advantage in the market. Effective measurement of the performance level of all the employees regardless of gender is also extremely crucial for achieving success in the market. Therefore, if organizations do not focus on measuring the performance level of female employees, it will discourage them to give their best at the workplace. Now, de-motivated or discouraged employees will induce organizations to invest more for the fulfilment of the operational process. As a result, it will increase the cost required for fulfilling the business process in an effective manner (Nickson, 2013). Proper assessment of performance level will allow the organizations to encourage all the present female employees to give their best at the workplace. Moreover, it also can hamper the present reputation level of the organizations dealing in the hospitality and tourism sector in a major way. Now, adverse impact on reputation is also likely to create negative impact on the overall business level.
Di Pietro, Di Virgilio and Pantano (2012) have illustrated the fact that providing equal opportunity to the female employees in leadership position is also critical to the success of the organizations dealing in the hospitality and tourism sector. It will allow female employees to have a clear career enhancement path for the fulfilment of all the professional goals and objectives. For that reason, providing equal opportunity to the female employees is the best possible solution to use gender diversity in an effective way. For that reason, organizations dealing in the hospitality and tourism sector will have to focus on initiating different changes in the present HR guidelines (Han, 2013). Hospitality and tourism sector organizations can also focus on including different training and development session for both male and female employees to educate them about the significance of maintaining healthy workplace. It will allow organizations to avoid unnecessary situations in an effective way. Moreover, it will also help to educate male employees to develop a positive attitude towards the inclusion of female employees at various position of the organization (Richard, Kirby & Chadwick, 2013). Over the years, several cases have been identified where female employees faced different sexual, physical and mental abuse at the workplace. It has created adverse impact on the inclusion of female employees’ perspective in a major way. Therefore, proper training and development will restrict male employees from committing such unethical activities at the workplace.
On the other hand, it will help female employees to counter such situation in an effective way. Therefore, it will definitely help to maintain diversified workforce for the fulfilment of organizational responsibilities. Hospitality and tourism sector organizations have to focus on the development of the effective cross-cultural communicational system where employees can able to share their thoughts and values on a regular basis. It has been assessed that effective use of communicational structure can help the organization to spread the knowledge of performing any particular strategy (Tang, 2014). Therefore, it will also create positive impact on maintaining diversified workforce for the fulfilment of the business objectives. In addition, organizations also have to focus on maintaining all the lawsuits related to inclusion of female employees at the workplace. For instance, each guideline mentioned in the gender diversity act will have to perform to avoid any unnecessary challenges in performing all the responsibilities of the business process. Hence, it will eventually help to create positive impact on gaining competitive advantage in the market.
The above illustration has emphasized the fact that inclusion of female employees is essential for fulfilling all the requirements related to the hospitality and tourism sector. Moreover, as the overall market is increasing in a significant manner, inclusion of female employees will allow handling customers from different cultural, ethical and geographical background. Therefore, it will help organizations dealing in the hospitality and tourism sector to achieve sustainable growth in the market. Moreover, utilization of female employees in the managerial position will help organizations to become more flexible in handling different obstacles in the business processes. It will help organizations to keep the satisfaction and motivational level of the entire workforce at the desired level, which will eventually create positive impact on achieving continues growth in the market.
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