This International Women's Day, what can we learn from Barbie?
Ahead of International Women’s Day (8th March), we’ve created Barbie’s Linkedin profile to highlight the endless career possibilities young girls can take inspiration from.
From a games developer to a marine biologist and Olympic swimmer to a pilot, Barbie’s CV is truly impressive. With over 200 career roles in her lifetime¹, Barbie’s portfolio highlights that young girls can achieve anything they want to. Our team have put together five things we can learn from Barbie’s CV:
1. Try new things
Barbie is a really great example of not limiting yourself to just one niche, or feeling like you have to fit into a certain stereotype or job role.
Career hopping can be a beneficial way to learn what it is you truly would like to do with your life. As long as each job change is carefully planned and considered, and aligns with your long and short term goals, it can help you navigate where your true ambitions lie.
2. STEAM opportunities for women are increasing
As the doll brand becomes increasingly diverse and inclusive, Barbie’s roles have expanded into science, technology and engineering positions, showcasing the real-life progress being made towards female representation in STEAM industries.
We think Barbie is really starting to play a pivotal role in encouraging women to achieve a STEAM career, and we think this demonstrates the important role dolls play in shaping a child’s future.
As well as this, the number of women being accepted onto undergraduate STEAM courses has increased in recent years, and similarly, there continues to be a higher percentage of girls choosing STEAM related subjects at A-level. However, it’s clear that work needs to be done to reduce the gender gap in STEAM fields².
3. A job doesn’t define you
Barbie’s list of careers proves that a job is something you do, and not who you are. Whether you work in retail, manufacturing, fashion, or politics, a career doesn’t define you as a person.
Loving your job is important, however, it shouldn’t define your identity. If you start to believe you're only successful if you’re doing well at work, then this could negatively impact your mental health. Success shouldn’t be measured by your job or wealth, but it should derive from doing something you love, and having people around you that you love and love you.
Barbie's long list of job roles also highlights that your career can change at any moment, and so it’s important to recognise that this is a possibility and to cement your happiness in other things in life, such as friends and family.”
4. Don’t accept the gender pay gap
Despite attempts to narrow the gender pay gap, women in 2022 still earned 8.3% less than men³. Unfortunately, there are still disparities in the hiring and promotion process based on gender, with many organisation guilty of favouring men when it comes to salary increases and bonuses⁴.
If you’re an in individual interested in fighting against the gender pay gap, and you believe this is impacting you directly, here are a few tips from our team:
- Approach your HR team or manager and ask to discuss your pay
- Value yourself and your worth
- Prepare a case for why you believe you’re worth more. If your company appreciates you, they should take all of your points into serious consideration
- Research your industry and look at job descriptions and salary bands for reference
5. The sky’s the limit
Perhaps the biggest learning from Barbie’s CV is that the sky's the limit. Breaking into your dream career can sometimes pose challenges, however, believing in yourself, and keeping a positive attitude and mindset towards learning new things can be a great way to build resilience and remain confident in your abilities.
At The Kid Collective, we’re really proud to stock toys that encourage development and growth, and we believe that dolls can be really instrumental in helping children decide what they want to do with their life. Barbie has been criticised in the past for not being representative enough, but in recent years, it’s clear that the brand is taking action to improve the dolls they release.
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To view our range of educational toys, please visit: https://www.thekidcollective.co.uk/educational-play.html
Laura Davies is the founder of the The Kid Collective, the ultimate shopping destination for toys and brands that support learning through play. Everything is consciously selected with the benefits of play in mind, ensuring that each toy inspires growth in children, for today and tomorrow. When it comes to play, we know what matters.