Speaking Context

Interesting article:


I thought this Reductress did the same thing, funnier:

‘Hello Ken’ Doll Keeps Interrupting ‘Hello Barbie’

It’s my sense that teaching women feminist etiquette rather than business etiquette is a massive problem.

In business, decorum and grace still count, but in the end, quality, creation and enhancement mean the world. Everyone’s job is to add value to a forward moving resolution.

In feminist, the goal is to be politically correct and deferential, working to create one official voice rather than moving forward using the best of what is on offer. We let the weakest guide us so that we stay disempowered, rather than letting the strongest guide us to create more corporate power and success.

Feminists write off business as venal, rude and inconsiderate, but business has changed over the years to be much more open, equal and free, if you agree to play the game, where the game is creating more shared success.

You can’t be a shrinking violet, coming from your brokenness and also be a valued contributor to our joint enterprise. You can be an introvert who writes better than speaks, you can be a detail oriented person who excels at execution, you can be a colourful flower who charms customers, but as long as you bring something special, you will find a way to offer your unique gifts.

Business thrives on diversity and different, challenging viewpoints and skills, because the conflict and cooperation between them makes enterprises stronger and more vibrant. An organization full of clones will soon fall on its own myopia, which can be a problem with feminist endeavours.

You don’t have to be a man to succeed in business, as millions and millions of women have proven over the decades, but you do need to trust your own gifts, to offer them boldly, and to stand up rather than shrinking back from vital confrontation. You have to be willing to learn, grow and become stronger by engaging in shared work that develops skills and lifts all boats.

It is easy to feel erased as a woman. You do need a strategy in the world to be able to make yourself heard and by being heard, become valued.

Feminists might say that the way to make this happen is for men to become more like women, surrendering their voice to the group.

I suggest that the models of a place where women have already found their voice, where men have already been taught to listen to women provide a better basis for women speaking up, and that place is in business.

Making men weaker and less assertive has limits in many ways. Finding ways for women to be stronger and more assertive without having to lose their the femininity that makes them unique and become one of the boys seems like a better plan.

Business etiquette, which, thanks to actions of millions of women claiming their own voices, has become much more gender open in the last decades, seems like a good model.

I know that it has provided me a technique for me to get outside of gendered expectations and move to professional ones which value what I offer rather than finding ways to dismiss me because of my perceived group identification.   Business etiquette let me fight for my point of view, allowing my contributions to be heard and valued.

We all need to decide what we want, how we want to take power in the world.  Surrender is great and fun if we have something or someone we want to give ourselves to, but in the end we have to contribute something good or we just become disposable.

Everyone needs to know how to contribute beyond the fear of not being cute or attractive because it is who we are that shapes our lives and our world, not who we aren’t.

I stand for individual contributions that contribute to shared goals, making the process smarter and more considered.  I just think we come together in business to do that, feeding our families and making a better world.