The dawn of a new age
Future of work
Someone once said to me "At the top, the culture of business is masculine - it's all the same, you all [women] just need to learn to be more like men". This got me thinking.
- We inherently promote people that are like us - we have unconscious bias for "people like me".
- Diversity will not be achieved by promoting people who act like white males.
- We all have unconscious incompetence which leads towards personal attack rather than constructive feedback.
- Self awareness is the only way to navigate the workplace of the future.
I am driven by:
- I spent the first 12 years of my career being mentored to act like a male in the workplace - because they were white males in a workplace. No fault to them they told me what had worked for them to get forward.
- I am sick and tired of attending International womens days events full of women. Displaying stats and making women to be the victim of circumstance. Women must do more. But to do more is not to learn to be more assertive. It's to educate, to ensure that you hold yourself to the best standard of yourself and hold others to account when they fail to be the best version of themselves.
To achieve a human workplace requires us to take action to create awareness of behaviours, educate and understand.
A standard you let slide us a standard you abide.
My first step in this journey is to understand the prevalence of casual sexism in the workplace. this doesn't cover conscious sexual harassment. It is an attempt to discover if we can lean to respond faster and avoid the typical reactions to casual sexism:
- Overreacting to one comment due to a build of up
- Ignoring, giggling
- Bitterness and resentment - the death by a 1000 cuts.
- Resigning or taking revenge often by exclusion.
So can you recognise casual sexism in the workplace? How do you react? What response is from the best version of you - is humour the best, can we ask a question or reframe to make the speaker think about what they have said - if you had that moment again - How do you wish you would have responded?
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My hypothesis are:
a) Humour is always the best defence. However - finding a witty response when you are shocked by what you just heard/seen can be tricky..!
b) Some people are unconsciously incompetent at how to interact with the different sexes in the workplace. The only model for business they know if is the alpha male Gordon Gecko approach. It is our responsibility to help them navigate the changing world.
c) Gender Bias is so baked in. We can take control of the issue by delegating the job to ourselves (It's our job) to help educate them to become consciously competent at being humane.
As a leader are you aware of the complaints women make and how frustrated they are in the workplace? Here are some common complaints women make of the modern workplace
- PayGap - the Pay Gap in Australia still sits at 15.3% is it a great deal if you get a women to do the same job a man does for less?
- Mansplaining - repeating what a woman has just said or explaining something (to a woman) in a condescending manner - often assuming she doesn't understand.
- Gender Bias - the norms that many people were bought up with have changed. Yet their attitudes and actions haven't yet caught up.
- Calling female employee's girls
- Paternalistic treatment - providing fatherly feedback rather than professional feedback.
All of these items leads women to feel like "IMPOSTERS" in the workplace. I hear often "I feel like i am dying from a death from 1000's cutts". This lowers self confidence in the workplace and leads to moments of self doubt. Leaving women feeling frustrated and less likely to put their hand up to take the next step.
If you need help navigating how women work in the workplace contact me - email@example.com
- The term for this habitual response is "Verbal Self Defence" this draws on the work of Suzette Haden Elgin.
- HBR published a series of articles on What Now - how to respond to #metoo read more here
- Dunning Kruger Effect