Is she assertive or ruthless? The stereotype of the she-devil boss abounds in the workplace. And there is some truth to every stereotype. Unfettered, women have been able to accomplish on many fronts; consequently, they have earned their promotions. Yet, many women prefer a male boss. Why?
According to Gallup polls female aversion to a female boss is concentrated among older women from ages 35 and up. A University of Toronto Study (2008) reported that women working for a female supervisor experience more stress symptoms (emotional and physical) than women working for a male. A British study reveals that one out of six women experience underlying tensions with a female boss. “Men make better bosses because they are easy-to–read. You are on a more stable playing field.”
Female employees complain that their female supervisors:
* Bring problems to work with them
* Have mood swings.
* Don’t have a clear company vision and are all over the map.
* Don’t do as a good a job as they could do.
How to navigate the workplace when you don’t like your boss – male or female:
* Often employees actualize their negative prophecies. Even if in the past you have had bad experiences with your boss, begin each day with a clean slate. Could you be in some way fueling the fire? Don’t play the victim. Change your own dynamics –act empowered and knowledgeable.
* Remember to maintain good posture – shoulders back and down. Not only will your boss respect your demeanor, but studies show that good posture activates confidence in your own work. And when you believe in what you are doing, you transmit this state of mind at work.
* Affirm your boss (verbally or in your mind) with kindness and compassion. Your boss takes the heat when things go wrong on the work front. Many conflicts are halted when you see things from the other side.
* Make your boss feel secure. Cornered, anxious or fearful animals lash out.
* When at work just do your work – what a relief to leave your miserable problems at home and take a break.
* If you feel that you are about to boil over, take a walk out in the light. This way when you return to your desk, you can respond rather than react.
* If your boss is doling out impossible assignments that you feel won’t work, ask her to show you how. Sometimes she doesn’t realize the improbability until she actually tries to do it herself.
* If you feel that you are smarter and more capable than your boss, don’t regard her with baleful eyes. Instead become the go-to person in your niche, come earlier and stay later, answer questions and help others out like a team player; soon you will get promoted.
By Debbie Mandel