Posted by: raesalley | June 1, 2007

women & work

I’ve heard repeatedly lately that women don’t work well with other women – they’re too catty, too competitive, too… and I’ve been trying to figure that all out. It doesn’t make sense, despite the number of instances I see it happening. It just presents as insecure women thinking that the only way for them to maintain their position is to degrade and demean every female around them.

The most recent incident was on one of the online forums where someone posted that a possible cause for the original poster not getting told something at work was that it’s a women’s group and that they’re just backbiting or what have you. Now, that is possible. It does happen. But it’s likely that the original poster works in a high-pace environment and a ball got dropped. Was it an important one? sure. But it wasn’t the end of the world. What astounded me was the amount of people posting shortly after that saying how they’d hate to work in a mostly female or all female environment because women are such catty bitches.

The other recent incident was in a meeting, where one coworker was reporting about how a meeting went and throughout she was getting the cold shoulder from one of the organizers. She didn’t know why she was at the meeting, the organizer didn’t know why she was there, but it seemed important that she be there since she presented a few points nobody had considered. When the coworker was discussing this with another one the sole reason given was that the organizer, a woman, does not work well with other women. Granted, the organizer has shown this trait repeatedly and had actually been shuffled quite a bit around the building to avoid being fired before she ended up supporting an all male unit.

I work in an all female unit, in a mostly female industry segment, for my day job. I won’t say that we’re all the best of friends, but the three women I work the most with are the ones who threw my wedding shower. I’ve had drinks with these women, played softball on the Center team and shared books. I won’t say that I’d consider all the women I work with great friends I’d invite over for drinks and a barbeque, but some I might. The times we’ve been catty to each other is usually about something ridiculous (like someone’s driving skills) or jokingly. I won’t say I get along with all of them perfectly (like I’m still not sure about my boss in some ways but she isn’t sure about me either), but we get along fairly well.

At some point, I’m sure this will all make sense…but I don’t see it any time soon.

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