I took my time to write this blog post because I really want to get through with thoughts and emotions before I sit down with my fine long fingers(lol) to type and shake a particular table.
Growing up as a young girl, I have always heard tales about how unpleasant females in leadership positions are, I heard males expressing how they disdain having female bosses and it became more surprising to even hear females saying the same thing or preference to work with a male colleague rather than a female colleague.
Over the years, I have realized that the unpleasant tales about female leaders is just one of the biggest lies the society has sold to us and ingrained in innocent hearts even right from childhood. It is not uncommon to see people disrespect females in leadership positions and disregard their decisions.
It became obvious that even the so-called difficult female bosses had previously been treated badly by people so it became a case of ‘once bitten one million times shy’. However, this is not to support transference of cruelty.
Often times, people are uncomfortable about a strong, assertive female boss while they falsely claim that it is because of a particular trait in her and it absolutely has nothing to do with her gender. A lot of these ill attitudes stem from an unhealthy patriarchal mindset that ‘A woman can’t be my leader or I can’t be told what to do by a woman’.
I have a question for you, haven’t you ever attributed a female boss’s erratic moods to PMS (premenstrual syndrome) or her marital status? A lot of times, women leaders are judged more than male leaders, on many more dimensions that don’t apply to men, from clothes to hair and make-up etc.
For instance, when a male boss is assertive, he is typically seen as confident and decisive then when a woman tries to exert her authority in a similar fashion, she could be perceived as aggressive, emotional or irrational. People have a problem with ambitious women because they view it as going against the typical status of women.
More often than not, we have this belief that women should play the supporting role instead of the one leading the charge and when they successfully climb the ladder of success against the tides we rather unfairly want women bosses to be nurturing, likeable and warm, because that’s what we expect women to be, like a mother. But in actual fact, she is your boss not your mother.
A practical example is Sheryl Sandberg, Facebook Chief Operating Officer. She is powerful, but she is also very relatable. However, not every female boss is like that, this is often held against them, this is prejudice and it is in every sense of the word wrong.
I had my first work experience after secondary school as a sales rep in a well-known boutique in Lagos. The business owner, my boss was a beautiful woman in and out that treated me with kindness at the same time I saw how she firmly dealt with issues to set employees on the right path. I picked couple of valuable entrepreneurial lessons from her that had stuck with me over the years.
Moving on, I have worked with 3 male bosses and 3 female bosses and it was blissful working with each one of them at different phase of my life. I can’t even put up a debate that ‘A female boss is better than a male boss’ because at the end of the day we are all humans with flesh and blood, we really don’t possess 100% perfection. So, why compare?
What matters is to focus on always being a better version of oneself in character and competence. Deal with people in love no matter the perceived weaknesses, celebrate their strengths and understand people for who they are. Often times, the state of your heart propels the things that come or happen to you. So, if you think someone or a particular gender is unfavourable to you maybe you should check yourself first before pointing accusing fingers.
This post is dedicated all the boss ladies out there and the female bosses I have ever worked with, thank you for being exemplary leaders and paving the way for others. This post is part 1, expect the concluding part of What did you hear about female bosses? next week where the myths you have heard about female bosses will be cleared. I look forward to your comment in the comment box.
Have a pleasant weekend. Je t’aime mon ami🤗🤗🤗
Awesome… Great thought