This chapter examines women’s roles, expectations and experiences into two comparable, male-dominated industrial manufacturing companies in Australia. It is based on the findings of a research report undertaken in 2004, the aim of which was to compare the equal opportunity reports of two companies with the actual experience of women workers in those two companies. Both companies were operating within the same legislative and industrial framework and therefore were subject to the same requirements in terms of Australia’s equal opportunity legislation, including its reporting requirements. Both also operated in the same local labour market. Nonetheless, it was found that one company provided what were perceived as ‘good’ jobs for women while the other provided jobs that were seen as ‘bad’ jobs. Clearly, this resulted not from external factors but from a combination of the operational, management and cultural conditions within each company.
Managing Diversity in Australia: Theory and Practice p. 107-119