Leading While Female

I’ve been supervised by both male and female supervisors.  I’ve supervised both male and female colleagues.  The success or failure of those experiences has had less to do with gender than with personalities.  But what is your experience?

The Atlantic Magazine – my very favorite periodical – seems to be on a Women-At-Work kick that is not necessarily helping The Cause – if the cause = thriving on the job regardless of gender.  In the past 16 months, they’ve featured:

So what’s your experience, my friends who identify as female?  Do you feel bullied?  Criticized? Awful? Unhelped?

Remember when Madeleine Albright said, “There’s a special place in hell for women who don’t help each other.” That didn’t go very well, did it?

Frankly,  there are some women who are difficult to work with and there are some men who are difficult to work with and there are non-binary people who are difficult to work with – but it’s not about gender or identity.

It’s about personality.  It’s about collegiality and expecting the best of each other. It’s about giving each other a break.  It’s about sharing the credit and taking the blame.  It’s about letting each other fail without shame.  It’s about sharing a common mission.  It’s about trust.

(Red Flag:  If your colleague’s mission is to promote herself/himself/themselves over the organization, look out.)

Women:  do you find it more or less difficult to work with other women?

Men:  do you prefer to work with one gender over another?

What’s the key to excellent collegial work lives?  Apparently The Atlantic is curious about this and so am I. Or maybe they are just trying to sell magazines.

Image from The Young Clergywomen’s Project and specifically from a post by Sarah Weisiger.

2 responses to “Leading While Female

  1. Hmmm. I have worked for and with a lot of women, plus several men. I cannot say that gender has much to do with their work styles and habits. Bullies are bullies no matter what their gender. Professionalism comes in all shapes, colors and genders. Teamwork is teamwork.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Judy Cunningham

    I have worked with both men and women, although most of my career has been in male dominated industries. My only female manager was two rungs above me, and she was a wonderful advocate for women in my company, and an inspiring mentor. Most of my (otherwise male) managers have been good, with the exception of one narcissistic, incompetent male. I have had collegial relationships with female coworkers, and have not witnessed any of the backbiting that I have seen referenced by others.


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