Toxic, unsupportive female bosses, why are they so unhelpful?
Last week I was having a conversation with a mummy friend about unsupportive female bosses, and it got me thinking, why there seems to be a lack of sisterhood in the office especially at the top of organisations.
Life at the top – can very lonely for some
It made me wonder why only 6.4% of women hold a CEO position in the FTSE 500 companies. Were these women supported in their journeys or was it a struggle for them? Were they too, faced with unsympathetic management styles? We know that often those who are bullied typically become bullies.
This piece is not an excuse for such behaviours, but more written to gain insight. As knowledge is power right? And power enables you to battle through such challenges.
The psychopaths of the board room
This got me thinking about the personality traits of senior management across gender. And it led me to Dr Hare’s work; he’s a criminal psychologist and developed the Hare Psychopathy Checklist. He researched a link between psychopaths within the boardroom. Finding that senior managers personality characteristics to the likes of, or on the spectrum of Ted Bunty’s. Wanna read more see link here
Nah that’s not right?
Sounds strange huh? But yes manipulative, lacking empathy, emotional shallowness, callousness, unwillingness to accept responsibility for actions, a tendency to boredom, lack of behavioural control, basically anti-social office behaviours balanced with creativity, singled mindedness and genius is often what it takes to make your way up to the top of organisations. Go have a watch of Misery and see if you can spot traits of Annie Wilkes behaviour in any of your bosses.
I’ve worked hard for this shit… therefore so should you!
Colleagues, I’ve worked with; have explained to me, they’ve had to make lots of sacrifices. I’ve sat through many of coffee breaks where they’ve explained personal battles and challenges for them to reach their positions and how the next generation seem to take for granted the level of hard work and sacrifices involved.
But what these managers don’t seem to appreciate is the rapid change in technology and the ways of work, access and speed to information, plus communication has had an impact on progress –making the workforce younger 30s as opposed to 40 or 50s. And this can be intimidating for managers, knowing their staff knows or has more skilled than themselves.
We have also seen the rapid change in social acceptability, laws and technology
My grandmother once told me, she would take her 6 year old son to the library and leave him there surrounded by books and a packed lunch, as she had to go to work and had no one to look after him. No wonder he became a brain box scientist [surrounded by those books every school holiday]. Today this would be considered as child abuse and you’d be frog marched off to social services.
In today’s society the balance between work and life has shifted/disappeared, it’s a dichotomy given the rapid change in laws and technology. We’re working harder not smarter. It’s difficult to switch off: what with your work phone, home computer, 24 hours conference calls ability and timeless or endless working hours. And this endless toll of work does wonders for our stress levels and our abilities to be rational sympathetic human beings and good communicators.
Getting the best out of your boss
I could use this post to list all the reasons for this unsupportive approach of working. Because I find that understanding why things are the way they are, helps to address these challenges. We know in order to move mountains and to get to that next level of where we want to be in our careers we need to work together – think A team.
We have seen brilliant examples in history and in fiction (Marvel films) where working collectively supports the greater good and bigger picture.
Why this post.
At Nariva Boutique we’re all about keeping things light, helping you to feel freer and more inspired. We know you work bloody hard and want you to be able to switch off a little. Enjoy your cup of [you fill in the blank here] and be inspired to be the very best that you can be.
We only live once, so really need to make sure we are surrounded by the things we love doing, as well as grabbing that time for ourselves.
Next post within this series is going to look at how to handle tricky personalities at work. Stay tuned, comment below we would love to hear from you?