Denise pondered the conflict between she and her male subordinate, Rob. She weighed possible actions against imagined results. She wondered if the best thing wouldn’t be to just let it drop. But then again, the precedent would undermine her ability to supervise the rest of the employees. And Rob’s ego would permeate the whole company. Denise picked up the phone.
Mr. Conners answered before the second ring ended. “Hello.”
“This is Denise, do you have a few minutes?”
Denise shuffled her weight in the chair. “Rob and I have a difference of opinion. I’d like the three of us to sit down and discuss it.”
Mr. Conners didn’t immediately answer. His breathing into the telephone receiver, the only sound during the awkward pause. Mr. Conners cleared his throat. Then he cleared it a second time. “Umh, Rob’s with me now.”
“Were you going to allow me to tell my side of the story?” As soon as the words took flight, Denise regretted them. She knew she sounded whiny and weak. Two of the worst possible positions for her at this time. No matter what anyone said, beneath the surface in her company, men still overruled the women. Denise was tiring of the battle from managing men.
Since Satan convinced Eve to pluck the forbidden fruit from the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, men and women have fought over positions of authority. This does not mean women can’t or shouldn’t supervise men. But it does mean conflict is guaranteed.
No matter how good a woman’s plans, decisions, or communication, typically, at least one male in the organization will resist her strategies. Even if two men disagree, often there is mutual respect. This enables men to work together as long as they have common goals. The environment is different, when a male – female situation is involved.
Many companies have paid the price of split loyalty when a woman is in charge without moral support. It takes longer for her to grow trust among the troops. Delays, sabotage, and unease cost money. Unfortunately, a woman almost always needs the backing of a man, so she can successfully use her gifts for the benefit of all at work. Like it or not, this has been the case since the Garden of Eden.
Tomorrow, we’ll look at specific snares a female manager faces, versus those of her male counterparts. We can’t put back the forbidden fruit that started it all.
But we can consult God, analyze our tactics, take courage, and refuse to let insubordination keep us from doing what we’re meant to do.
Anita FreshFaith @ Work
What plucks your ability to manage well?
Genesis 3:16 (NIV)
To the woman he said, “I will make your pains in childbearing very severe; with painful labor you will give birth to children. Your desire will be for your husband, and he will rule over you.”
Anita Agers-Brooks is a Business Coach, Certified Personality Trainer, Communications Specialist, national speaker, and author. She lives in Missouri with her family.