Happily Ever After…?

Men & Women's Expectations vs. Reality on Child Care Responsibility

Men & Women’s Expectations vs. Reality on Women’s Child Care Responsibility. Source: HBR

The issue of gender equality in the workplace is a biggie, and one that I was waiting to tackle for now.  But I just had to share this recent article from Harvard Business Review: Rethink What You “Know” About High-Achieving Women.

The authors examined a large sample of Harvard MBA grads spanning many decades, and found an important piece to the gender gap puzzle: At-home expectations of (gender) roles play a part in explaining career achievements.

I strongly encourage you to read the whole article, as the authors can obviously do it far more justice than I could.  But if you’re too busy, here’s the takeaway: If you’re married, in a relationship, or plan to be in one at some point in your life, your partner’s expectations of your roles in the relationship matter (obviously).  If your partner holds “traditional” views (i.e. that a woman’s role is as caregiver, and a man’s as breadwinner), then your own career aspirations are likely to suffer.  On the other hand, if you are lucky enough to have a partner who is truly a partner, then your work life will likely be far more satisfying.

But if you are in the former position, fear not.  For the most part, views on expected roles aren’t set in stone, and a few discussions with your boo about your values and expectations for work/family division can help get you, can make the two of you an unstoppable couple 🙂

And as inspiration, my all-time favourite TV couple, Brad & Jane.  Happy Friday!

anigif_enhanced-buzz-20185-1360177473-1 brad-jane-cash brad-jane-dreamteam

To Talk or Not to Talk

Hillary-Clinton

In honour of birthday-girl Hillary Clinton, I thought I’d write a post about gender bias and politics.  No matter your political views (and I’m Canadian so it doesn’t matter anyway), you can’t argue that Hillary is a remarkable leader.  And as a female leader, she has overcome many more obstacles than you could imagine.

One specific obstacle is explored in research by Yale professor Victoria L. Brescoll.   In her research, Dr. Brescoll examined gender differences in volubility (the amount of time an individual spends talking) in the US Senate.  It was originally thought that as a person’s status/prestige/power (whatever you want to call it) increased, so did the amount of time they spent talking.  However, Dr. Brescoll found that this relationship was only true for men.

This may seem trivial, but consider this:  People who speak more, are in turn perceived to be more powerful and more likely to be considered a leader.  And with more power, men speak more, thereby further increasing their power.  It’s a reciprocal relationship that heightens the status of men, leaving women behind.

So why don’t women with power also speak more?

Continue reading