Women, This is Why Men Won’t Invite You to the Conversation

Posted on March 11th, 2016 by



If you think this is going to be an attack on men, or an exhortation to women to behave more like men and lean in, relax. It isn’t. I haven’t suddenly taken on a new stance and become anti men. However, I do still firmly believe that what women bring to the table is good enough in its own right and we don’t have to start swaggering around in pinstripes and sitting wth our legs akimbo. (Although if you want to, feel free!)

I have been revisiting some of the Speak Up material prior to the May event and reading my research notes.

Here’s some of it below which led to that rather provocative title.

Men talk to determine and achieve status. Women talk to determine and achieve connection. It’s known as ‘rapport talk’. For men life is a ladder with the best spots being high up. For women, life is a network and the better spots are greater connections. Women talk to work out what they are thinking.

Deborah Tannen.

And from ‘Duels and Duets’ by John F Locke:

Men see conversations as contests to win. Women as something to share and be harmonious. Men like to duel, women like to duet.

Gray and Annis conducted over 100,000 interviews with male & female executives to highlight blind spots in communication between the genders.  72% of men Gray and Annis interviewed said that women ask too many questions. Some felt these questions slowed down progress and delayed decision making, while others felt that a female boss was being too critical and controlling. They observed meetings where men were constantly throwing down ideas while the women were not saying much at all. The men ignore them and the women feel the men don’t care about what they have to say. Gray and Ennis think our different hormones play a significant part in this. Testosterone and oxytocin.

It’s fascinating, isn’t it? The more we understand the better able we all are to play to our strengths and be the best version of who we are. It isn’t about becoming like men, but about being more confident women at work. Being the best version of you.

If this is something that interests you, check this out. It’s Speak Up in London, in May where one of the things we cover is practical ways to manage this issue.

The picture above is of Judy Garland.

Last Chance to Get Your Early Bird Gift!

Posted on March 9th, 2016 by

Our one day course in London, May 7th, is booking now! Reserve your place and spend a whole day planning next steps in your brilliant career.

Well done, Lego!

Posted on March 7th, 2016 by

Lego is on a return to non gendered form with these caring men figures. Hooray.

Question & Answer with Malala Yousafzai

Posted on February 27th, 2016 by

Malala, what impact has winning the 2014 Nobel Peace Prize had upon your life?
Winning the Prize is such a precious award and I was not expecting it at all. It was such a surprise to win that at the age of 17… If there were no terrorists in Swat Valley and I could go to school, then I wouldn’t have had to speak out because there would have been no need. I stood up because there was a need. Someone needed to stand up, to bring change

Women Show More Empathy Than Men – Does that make you yawn?

Posted on February 26th, 2016 by

It’s been well known for some time that yawning is contagious. Someone next to you yawns and within a minute you’ll probably find yourself yawning too.

So, transgender women cannot be feminists? I beg to differ.

Posted on February 23rd, 2016 by

I have been puzzled by the debate on transgender women not being allowed to be ‘feminists’. I have truly tried to understand it, I honestly have. The argument seems to be that if you have not been born a woman an have spent part of your life as male, you cannot truly appreciate the oppression given to women, cannot understand the life experiences, and therefore, cannot truly be part of the sisterhood.

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