3 steps forward, two steps back

Women make better business leaders than men in all but two areas of management but men have the upper hand when it comes to focusing on the bottom line, according to an Australian survey released on Monday.

Data collected from 1,800 Australian female and male chief executive officers and managers found women exhibit more strategic drive, risk taking, people skills and innovation and equaled[sic] men in the area of emotional stability.

But men came out on top when it came to command and control of management operations and focusing on financial returns.

Just in case people might be worried that competent women in charge aren’t still up for being judged as to how well they fit the eye-candy criteria, Reuters illustrates their story with this:

Right. FSM forbid she should have a face like a proper person instead of sexaay hair, and why on earth would a manager be wearing a suit to work instead of a cocktail dress?

What else strikes Hoydenizens about the reportage here?

Categories: gender & feminism, media, work and family


8 replies

  1. I don’t know about you all, but I always conduct business in stilettos and a cocktail dress while sitting on a roof. Desks and business suits are just so passe
    Red Queens last blog post..Wingnuts- Still Just As Stupid As They’ve Always Been

  2. When the article talks about the strengths of female leaders, it uses quantative terms, like “more” or “better”. When it talks about male leaders it uses hierarchical metaphors, like “upper hand” and “on top”.
    I also have to wonder how much the extra “command and control” exhibited by men is determined not by their behaviour, but by a greater societal willingness to work with male leaders.

  3. Oh, and more on the linguistic analysis: not only are men’s achievements frame hierarchically, the article uses the format of “women’s acheivements are X, BUT men achieve Y”– this implies that the achievements of men negate or trump the achievements of women; the achievements of men are portrayed as modifying the achievements of women, while the inverse is not true.

  4. The survey was based on a “personality-based employee selection and development tool”. DING DING DING DING DING. Those things are usually a serious load of crap. If you are even vaguely smart and aware of how these work, you can select the “correct” answers for the result you want quite easily. I hate that employers actually use them.
    Also, were the respondents representative of the whole of Australian management or were they just the people who could be bothered to actually do survey like this?
    I tend to just assume that any “survey” reported on these days is about on the same level of legitimacy as one from Family Feud.

  5. That is so spot on, Beppie.
    I wondered what on earth ‘mischievous’ and ‘colourful’ have to do with managerial skills. Sounds like they’re describing pre-school artwork.

  6. Women are ambitious, bold, mischievous, colorful and imaginative.
    Just so, Su. I spotted that word ‘mischievous’ too, and thought, “infantilising crap”. Let’s just remind those women that they really are just little girls playing a man’s game.
    Deborahs last blog post..Where did I learn my racism?

  7. “mischievous, colorful and imaginative” leapt out at me, too. As did this:

    ”Men are task focused and concentrate on getting the job done without bothering too much with relationships.”

    This seems to somehow set relationships aside from “getting the job done”. When you’re talking about management, the two are one and the same. How can you manage effectively without people skills?
    No statistical analysis either; plus any manager worth their salt would take one look at these personality scale doodahs and choose the answers they’ve been socialised to believe are the ‘right’ ones.
    Lauredhels last blog post..Birthplans and Expectations

  8. ”equaled[sic] men in the area of emotional stability.”

    Just in case someone needed to be reminded that women aren’t total raging lunatics with their emotions and PMS.
    And since when men’s “emotional stability” is a good model to compare anyone’s emotional stability with?
    Mary Tracy9s last blog post..Pesky Emotions!

%d bloggers like this: