RE: Chatty vs. Bitchy

Subject: RE: Chatty vs. Bitchy
From: "Cindy Kight" <Cindy -dot- Kight -at- DataMaxGroup -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 29 May 2003 17:51:06 -0500

Eric Dunn asks:

<Is the stereotype/complaint really true? Is it really impossible for a woman to
be assertive in the workplace without being labeled bitchy? Seems to me the
polar opposites of friendly/chatty/flirty and bitch are like so many of the
other vapid discussions on-list. There's a huge range of attitudes in between
and there's a balance that HAS to be reached to be effective in a business

It's a much better business environment for women than it used to be. Mostly, it was a matter of sensitivity and getting used to the idea that women are real people with brains, too. Most men came around. And I agree that today most women perceived as 'bitchy' probably are, as are their 'jerk' counterparts. Assertiveness, appropriately applied, usually generates respect.

Here's my 'back in the day' story: I had a male manager 20+ years ago (I'm 45 now) who was your typical male chauvinist pig. He was an geek engineer who related much better to technology than to his fellow human beings in general, and to women in particular. After about three weeks, I had a very calm little talk with him asking him to find some way to treat me like an intelligent human being. Imagine my surprise when this arrogant, abrupt, condescending, women-are-only-for-boinking, guy starts CRYING and admits he doesn't know what to do because he's never had to deal with women this way before! I learned a lot that day about what's really behind people's attitude problems.

Cindy Kight
Technical Communications Mgr.
TSW Solutions, Inc.


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