Intro to Women's Studies 2010

etsu: 2011-2014

Why We Have Too Few Women Leaders

1 Comment

I really enjoyed the TED talk we watched where Sheryl Sandberg gave her take on why there are so few female leaders in the professional world. A lot of what she said resonated with me and I think also ties in with some other things we’ve discussed. When she said “sit at the table”, and explained that women are uncomfortable placing themselves right in the discussion, I thought back to when we discussed taking up space. Women often try to make themselves physically smaller while men don’t mind spreading out. In the business world, men typically don’t hesitate to sit at the table, figuratively and literally. Men feel comfortable dominating the conversation and making the business decisions while women might feel they should be less vocal. I can understand this, in male-dominated conversations, I’ve often been talked down to or even ignored. In these situations, I just stopped contributing. These were just discussions, I imagine being overlooked or patronized would feel even worse in a professional setting. The women might decide to stop speaking up and diminish themselves in future meetings, leaving before they leave in a sense. It also made a lot of sense when she talked about women being more responsible for their children, placing strain on them as they had multiple jobs. I think women who walk away from their careers are often written off as “too attached” to their children, when in fact, they might just be under pressure due to an unequal division of responsibility between them and their spouse.

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One thought on “Why We Have Too Few Women Leaders

  1. i’ve had the same experience “sitting at the table” or in discussions when my ideas or words were ignored or refuted by men/boys. and my first reaction was withdrawing and not contributing to the conversation. but that’s what they want you to do. nowadays i just bulldoze on sharing my opinions and speaking up.

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