A disclaimer (if needed) – This article is purely based on the feedback received from the men questioned and has no intentions to hurt, defend or offend anyone. So, there is no need to turn it into a gender-based mudslinging. It’s written with a good intent to gather opinions and share info.
We asked 50 men, about their opinions regarding women as coworkers and professionals. What kind of women they would like to work with and what kind of women they would hate to work with. These men hold decision-making positions in their respective fields. They all have worked with women. They all are from different industries. While 2014 onwards, we saw many women-led organizations coming up, many all-women startups bloomed and we saw more and more women taking lead. Several forums also came up with questions regarding the interest of working with only “all women organization” and also expressing the hatred towards men bosses because of several reasons. We were curious to know what men think about working women. What’s their opinion about the other smaller part of the working force? After looking at the social feed of several forums, we observed a great deal of disappointment in working women towards the men or general mindset or culture of the organizations they work with. Few were as a result of experience with few men and few were just assumptions like:
“Men want to work with only those women who have no mind or opinion of her own”.
“They can’t tolerate seeing a woman growing”.
“Men don’t like to report to a women boss”.
“They will always look under your skirt to give you that chair”.
“If only he could see my talent too”.
These are real statements made by real women on social media platforms. These statements are the outcome of real and bitter experiences. These statements might be out of anger, frustration or despair. But these statements shape the opinion of many people. Whatever is out there on social media never dies or fades away. It’s recorded forever. I have also worked with men all my life. I also have my share of good and bad experiences, but fortunately, nothing harassing or imprinted for life. I feel furious when is hear experiences of sexual harassments and filthy touches at the workplace and how women are dealing with on daily basis but this article is not about that at all. I have learnt a great deal with men that I have worked with. My first boss was a man, my last boss was a woman, they all taught me and trained me well and I have learned equally from all of them.
So, after talking to these 50 men, we were surprised to see that more than 90% of them have similar answers. The answers were totally different from what we actually expected. What we expected were some sexist remarks, patriarchy influenced statement, arrogant comments and what we got was totally different.
90% of Men would like to work with women who can take practical decisions keeping emotions aside.
Yes, 90%. Most of the men have made this clear indication, that irrespective of role or position, they would like to work with women who can be practical and shows traits of being a logical thinker. Apparently, they feel that women bring emotions beyond an acceptable level to work at times, which makes it difficult for the team as a whole to function effectively, especially if the woman is leading the team. Of course, it doesn’t apply to all women.
Kunal Ajit Sinha _ Founder/Director of Value 360Communications says, “Women who keep head over the heart is someone who is a better work colleague for me. Because at the workplace you need to make practical decisions and not emotional”.Value 360 has a bigger ratio of women over me employees and key decision-making employees are a perfect mix of men and women.
Rohit Dumir, Manager at FIL Funds network, – says, “I would like work with people who like to take ownership of tasks and see them through till implementation, they should be team players”
82% of men would like to work with women who can work hard and share equal responsibility.
Women who can work really hard and can share equal responsibility like others in the team irrespective of gender. This indicates that somewhere our aspirations as a women professionals very much matches what industry expects from us all. These men don’t want these women to come up with excuses and shirk off responsibilities at work just because they have special privileges as women.
Vinay Sharma – HEAD Online Marketing at IDP (South Asia, Thailand and Singapore) says, “I would love to work with women who can work as an individual and take equal responsibility like others in the team. She should be open to feedback and she should be courageous enough to put her point of view”
Amit Singh – Leading Marketing professional with NIIT LTD – “I would like to work with women, who holds good domain knowledge and has a sharp mind to learn along with confidence to act and make decisions”
75% of men want to work with ambitious women, who take their career seriously.
Women are multitaskers and men know that. They want to work with women, who can work with them for a longer period with stability and the ones who take their career seriously. Most of the men said, they would like to see women striking a balance between their personal as well as professional lives and take their profession as seriously as their personal life.
Piyush Kumar – Founder & CEO – Rooter –says .”I like working with women who are ambitious in their career and at the same time balance well between family, home and work. These women are superhumans. They don’t get tired and literally inspire others to push the boundary”.
He further mentioned that he has had 4 female bosses in his career and he strongly believes in what he said above.
Vikas Verma (Senior Professional with Redington India): “I don’t like to work with ones who are not professional enough and do not have the patience or zeal to tackle the situations along with taking many leaves without any reason”
Now this tells us what men think and feel about the qualities they look for in working women. Now let’s head further, we also asked these men what kind of women they won’t like to work with at all. That’s when it became really interesting.
95% of men won’t like to work with Gossipmongers
Abhay Jaiswal – Business Development professional at HT Media says “I hate working with women who are unprofessional gossip queens, who do nothing but only spreading the grapevines”.
Amit Singh – Leading marketing professional at NIIT Ltd says “I hate working with women who backbite and create politics inside workplace”
For 10% of men, it doesn’t really matter
Just to mention few men also mentioned that it doesn’t really matter to them if they are working with men or women, they don’t have any such preferences but numbers are not more than 10%.
Siddharth Chauhan: International award-winning short film director/writer says “I have no such preferences at work”
Nitin Guleria- Planning Director at Essence, says: “For me, it has got nothing do with gender. If he or she is are good at their job and can handle the responsibility, I would like to work with them”
Well, this makes us think a little about the general perception of the working force around us. Ultimately, be it men or women or third gender, we all love to work with hard working professionals and not like to work with those who have unprofessional attitude and seek unnecessary privileges. This applies to both men as well as women. All the men we interviewed have worked with women all their lives and most of them could specify the names of women they loved working with and also those who were not great work companions. The difference is just one, Former were very professional and hardworking and latter displayed unprofessional behavior which includes, gossiping, participating in office politics, asking for special privileges”. I am sure we will get similar answers if we ask what kind of men these people would like to work with. The point was to understand the perspective of men around the perception that is being spread too far. Women or men can’t work in a solitary environment. We have to work with each other, shoulder to shoulder.
So now we know, it’s not necessarily about the gender when it comes to work or profession, it’s about the right attitude towards work/profession.