It’s no news to anyone that women in the workplace have different challenges than men. ‘They’ say, ” Perception is reality”, so when it comes to how women project confidence in the workplace, it’s evident that women suffer from lagging behind their male-counter-parts (statistically), as well as facing harsher critique when it comes to being judged as ‘bitches’ (seeing as how there’s not a readily-used masculine counterpart).
A thoughtful friend sent me this Harvard Business Review article today which nicely articulated these set-backs that women can face, oftentimes unknowingly. From being too modest, to not stepping up to ask for what they deserve, or trying not to stand out, and keeping quiet. Take a quick read. It reminded me of being in class in college and some in my earlier jobs (when I didn’t work alone) and had to adapt to the politics of any office environment.
Even in my role now, working for myself, I’ve been directly told by male counterparts whom I meet networking that “I’m intimidating”, or once was even told I was “mean”. In the later situation, he was more upset that as an older man, with an impressive title, that I wouldn’t respond positively to his outdated flirtations, so he reverted back to the ways of the playground and called me “mean”. Regardless, it goes to show that there are differences in the perceptions of females professionals. If the tables had been turned and I hit on him, only to find he didn’t respond well, I wouldn’t assume he was “mean” or an “asshole” (the best version of male bitch of which I can think), I’d assume he wasn’t interested.