Posted by: tarynfox10 | March 26, 2013

What men can learn from women about leadership in the 21st century: 3/28

http://articles.washingtonpost.com/2011-08-10/national/35271442_1_female-leaders-leadership-women

The article above establishes many great points about the different leadership styles of men and women and how they effect our culture. We are seeing our culture shift a little bit as the years pass. Our society is becoming more collaborative and technology along with other tools are facilitating this kind of leadership. Women are generalized has having a more collaborative style of leadership, while men are considered to have more agentic qualities. This point about our culture gradually changing is very interesting. Should men be looking to women for assistance more than they do in terms of leadership style? If our society is becoming more collaborative, why are there still fewer women in leadership roles if collaboration is naturally used more by women?

Another good point that was made in this article is that men and women deal with stress differently. While under stress women tend to be more empathetic while men tend to be less empathetic. Women pick up on nonverbal cues more so than men, and they are more likely to look and face someone that is speaking in a meeting. These attributes may not seem like much, but in a job setting it is good to be able to pay attention to detail. Goman made a point that men give nonverbal signals to distinguish status, such as spreading out in a meeting or at their desk, therefore taking up a lot of space. This shows they are in charge and there is no room for collaborate work. These nonverbal cues can weaken an organization’s authority if it is a collaborative company. At the very end of the article, Goman asks a very good question, “If you behave like the boss who has all the answers, why would anyone else need or dare to contribute?”.

How do you think collaboration should fit into a leader’s style of leadership regardless of gender?

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Responses

  1. The points mentioned in this article are interesting and often seen as true for the most part. However, I think the article puts negative tone to the idea that men are not possessing the right leadership style for the current society. I do not think that that tone should be used. Yes, women hold good qualities in a leadership setting and yes, a collaborative leadership style can be good in certain job situations. But men have good qualities and their gendered leadership style can be useful as well. I don’t think men should behave differently or wear a “mask” to be more collaborative just like women shouldn’t. There are times when a boss like attitude is needed in a work setting. An agentic and collaborative style of leading can be used as a combination to have the best of both sides.

  2. Women and men both have different ways that they express emotions. Usually women express themselves in ways which their emotions are placed out in the open whereas men usually contain their emotions and don’t show them to anyone. I think that our sense of leadership is shaped around our own personalities and emotions and that people are aware of these emotions. But when is it appropriate to show them. More and more people are noticing that women are portraying images of what they think a women leader should look like. This concept of wearing a mask, also was discussed in our class today. I think that not only do people put on a front to become the expectations of what a women leader should look like but it is also a new outfit that they can put on to cover up their true self. It is sad that people feel the need to become something that they aren’t in order to become successful. With emotions playing in this role, I think that men are given more slack. I think that when women show their emotions that they are criticized for being weak and unable to be strong as a leader, but I also feel that they are criticized for being to bitchy or harsh for not showing any emotions. On the other hand, men are given more slack. I think that with emotions comes the responsibility to control them but also important to know when to show them.

  3. Collaboration has become the ultimate proof of leadership. I think men are adapting to the new requirements of a leader. And because of that, current leaders notice men more. Men are changing, becoming better. If women were already collaborative, they have nowhere to go in terms of leadership. And no one notices a static entity. No adaptation discourages confidence in abilities. Women might already be the ideal leaders, but the ones trying to find leaders, are looking for the people trying to become that ideal. Women are not changing, and current leaders are picking the men who are.

  4. It is interesting how leadership has evolved and especially within our country. Although how country was developed from collaboration and is formed around democracy, yet the main form of leadership was not always geared around teamwork. Our country since the revolution has been about a country of ordinary people, coming together and working towards something bigger. Yet as society advanced, we moved away from it. Recently, we are moving back towards it. Overall leadership is focusing on the followers and what they can do to get everyone involved and utilize everyone’s special skills. I think this is non-biased gender shift, both are making the transitions to this leadership style. It just so happens that collaboration and relationship-oriented leadership typically reside within women. I think this will give women the cutting edge in the upcoming years of leadership and help them adapt faster than men to this new style.

  5. To answer that last stated questions I believe collaboration should not be gender based because everyone has the capacity to work together, but instead collaboration should be necessary for a leader to be successful. In my experiences, although collaboration can be tedious and time consuming, it has benefited the outcome of a situation or project. Everyone in life is unique and has different viewpoints, opinions, and experiences in which they can bring to the table.
    One thing that did stick out to me about this post is the part about how a man can show a nonverbal sign of power through the way things are organized or ordered on his desk. Of all the statistics and researched theories we have learned and discovered none have been this strange to me. To me the way someone arranges their desk is based on personal preference and how organized they are. I have seen professors who are great educators, have some of the messiest desks I have ever seen. So I would have to disagree with some of the ideas in this post just based of off what I have noticed in my experiences. Like how the person I just interviewed stated, “many topics can be thought of in a gendered way, but I wouldn’t think most people initially think of it in this sense until asked specifically or question in a specific manner.

  6. I think it has been shown that collaboration is a process that promotes critical thinking, and critical thinking is the key component in avoiding issues of the “group think” mentality wherein unethical and ineffective decisions are made. Furthermore, collaboration also promotes competition and compromise. Two things which seem to be contradictory but in actuality help to promote the best forms of critical thinking and produce the best outcomes.
    On the on hand collaboration takes the idea or process out of the mind of one individual. By contributing to a group the process as a whole is likely to seem a higher volume of and a more diverse grouping of ideas which will contribute to the overall process and the completion of a specific task. In other words, it allows you to shoot around a multitude of ideas and formulate one cohesive, concise, efficient idea.
    Additionally, collaboration allows for more ownership of everyone involved in the completion of the task in order to reach the common goal. The more ownership an individual feels over and idea or process the more motivated that individual will be in completing hos or her own task which will contribute to the overall accomplishment of the goal.
    Collaboration is key in the advancement of leadership.


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