Women at Work: A Guide for Men – WSJ 12-14-14

News Release December 14, 2014

Recommended Reading for Men and Women in the Workplace

iStock_22039485Small_women business_walk

As a professional business career woman in 2014, I am amazed that we are still talking about Women at Work and a How to guide for Men. As the author Joanne Lipman suggests it is not a men bashing article, and yes I concur. Many of the eight items (see below) I have encountered myself, as recently as last week by a very good intentioned male. I think the last two paragraphs of the article sums it up for my latest experience. We just need men to be open to learning about the needs of their women colleagues.

“The good news is that more people are trying to bridge the difference. Mr. Boehm of eBay, who acknowledges that he is still on a “journey,” says that his perspective has changed over the course of his career. Fifteen years ago, “I thought I was a good guy, I treated everybody fairly,” but he didn’t understand the challenges faced by women and minorities. “Lots of people are like me,” he says. “They are well-intentioned. But they don’t know what they don’t know.””
Women do know. But we need to go beyond just talking to ourselves. It is time to invite men to join the conversation, too.

Another key point is sexism, some of which is very unintentional as we are biased in our own ways knowingly or unknowingly.

“Most of us—women as well as menhave unconscious biases about gender as well as race, says Brian Nosek, a University of Virginia psychology professor. He warns of the consequences of assuming, for example, that a woman with children wouldn’t want an assignment that requires travel. It “creates a self-fulfilling prophecy,” he says. “Very small decisions can accumulate very rapidly” to derail a promising career.”

And, yes providing constructive feedback, so each person in the business relationship can grow,

As a result, “men are scared to death to give us feedback…. They’ll let women run astray and off course and be fired before they’ll take the chance to give them feedback.”
Her advice: Be honest. That doesn’t mean you have to be blunt, adds Mr. Schwartz of the Energy Project, which is more than 60% female: “I’ve learned it’s a balance between honesty and empathy. Honesty without empathy is cruelty.”

The eight points in the article are:

1. She’s not “sorry,” she’s not “lucky”—and she’s not asking you a question.
2. She’s ready for a promotion—she just doesn’t know it yet.
3. She’s pretty sure that you don’t respect her.
4. She deserves a raise.
5. That’s actually not a compliment.
6. Don’t be afraid of tears.
7. Children grow up.
8. She’s your boss, not your mother.


Read the article: The Saturday Essay Women at Work A Guide for Men_12-14-14_WSJ


For further information, please contact me, info@savvan.com.


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About Linda Savanauskas

An accomplished talent management professional with experience in curriculum design, development of learning strategies, and professional skills development training programs for the workplace. Collaboration in training programs includes small and medium size businesses (SMB) to larger organizations from Raleigh to Charlotte, North Carolina. Virtual instructor led training can be offered to any location.