In our last issue, we touched briefly on the difference between male and female managers. When it is accepted that the variations in management arises from the difference of male and female, it is necessary to define these between the two genders.
Is the difference in the definition?
The first difference is noted as we define the two genders: Male and Female. The difference referred hereto is the differences in physical and genetic characteristics. However, there are also social and psychological differences. When psychological characteristics and social life are mentioned, emotions and socially acceptable behavior for both genders are also included in the definition. As it is still written in textbooks, bringing up children, cooking and cleaning the house are attributed to the female, while earning money and protecting the family are attributed to the male. When we hear ‘emotional, easily hurt, tearful,’ don’t we think of women, and ‘strong, adventurous, aggressive,’ we think of men? If, in some cases, we can be mistaken even with the physical appearance, could we also be mistaken in the differences we are trying to create in behavior and emotions we are attempting to push into molds? Then, we must look for the differences elsewhere.
Are women from a planet of emotions?
When emotions are mentioned, women come to mind. At times, being too emotional is scorned as being ‘like a woman’, feminine. In fact, emotions are part of being human, and being able to experience, to show emotion is being healthy. The difference is in the way the two genders show their emotions, and in their emotional responses. Another aspect of being emotionally demonstrative is the ability to understand emotions. Generally, women are better at understanding the other person’s emotions. They can recognize emotions from the eyes or the facila expression. The important question here is, is this characteristic a genetic trait in women, or is it acquired. According to one opinion, the reason for this ability of women is men. Women, who have been the weaker sex throughout history, learned to read men’s emotions in order to protect themselves. The dominant ones did not need this ability. Woman, who exerts great effort to express her feelings through every medium such as facial expressions, tone of voice, etc., is defeated in the end through man’s inability to read these, and starts shouting. The man, who cannot read the other person’s feelings, tries to suppress and control his own, and usually has to express himself through anger and aggression, which are the attributes society has seen fit to tag him with. Actually, sometimes the easiest and most comforting demonstration of positive or negative emotions is crying. However, crying has been forbidden to men from childhood, and they have been deprived of this. The only thing left to them, with the contribution of the testosterone hormone they carry, is their aggressiveness, which is oft emphasized by the society. The excessively aggressive and merciless behavior of women is usually described as being “manlike”, when, actually, the number of aggressive and merciless women is considerable.
Yes, men and women sometimes think and act differently. In truth, it is easier to find women who think and act different from each other. Similarly, not all men think the same and act the same. If it is necessary to summarize the differences between man and woman, the difference in understanding emotions, in perception, in rhetoric, memory and behavior should be mentioned.
Gender discrimination in the work place due to all the differences will diminish the success of the business. Business is a multi-dimensional concept. Gathering different abilities, different points of view under the same roof is not just providing equal opportunity, it is providing diversity. And diversity in the work place is one of the foundations of success.
WHAT DO MEN AND WOMEN TALK ABOUT WITH THEIR OWN KIND?
No matter how much friendship between men and women increases as a result of changing community living, the friendships with its own kind for both genders is still important. Usually, men have good male friends, and women have good female friends. Very close, to use an old expression, ’bosom’ friends with whom secrets can be shared. Very well, what do they talk about, apart from secrets? Are what men share among themselves different from what women share? If so, where does this difference lie?
Friendship between men is often encountered, in movies as well as in literature. These usually depict the friendship between men as resulting in creative outcomes. Heroism, important discoveries, success stories are all results of great friendships. These cannot be denied. But what we mainly see in practice are men talking about football, women and the stock market, where does the difference come from? Actually, the perspective changes when the friendship, the camaraderie of two men is mentioned. Still, men prefer to discuss their problems with their wives rather than with their friends. With their friends, they prefer communications that bolster their status. Although controversial, difference between men and women is accepted. Are they also different in this field?
Do you watch the TV series, Sex and the City? Its airing hours, its adverse impact on adolescents and children, can be the subject of another article. Broadcasting this series on a channel that can be watched by children, during hours they are awake, and without parental supervision, and its consequences can be discussed. But now we are looking at something else. What do these ladies talk about when they are together? They talk about their boyfriends, they share experiences. Very well, this series is distant to us, are our series different? Groups of women talking about their husbands, or other women. If we go back to daily life, we can add conversations about children to the list. Are these conversations that so intrigue, and sometimes belittled by men, unnecessary? No, actually it is these conversations that have accomplished socialization through the ages. These trivial conversations strengthen the ties between women. And the strengthening of this tie between women is of vital importance for transference to future generations.
Research has shown that the mental health of men were better when they had status, and of women, when they had friends, and they could transfer this well-being to their children. According to investigations, women are more reliable at reading emotions and responding to them than men, have more empathy, and show a more involved attitude in one-to-one relationships. Many people have attempted to evaluate the difference between the male and female brains. The identified differences are interpreted. One of the differences is that female babies look at people’s faces, whereas male babies look at mechanical toys. This difference permeates the entire life, and on an average, the woman smiles more in society, and make more eye contact. Women who are socialized and have the support of family and friends bring up healthy generations after healthy pregnancies. It has been observed that friendship between women reduces stress. Many studies report that women share their problems with friends rather than their husbands, while men share them with their wives. Some of these differences arise from hormones secreted by women, exclusive to them. The inhibition of these hormones make women look less for friendship.
Then, friendship between women is an important process for the future of the individual and humanity. Very well, how are conflicts resolved? Men resolve their differences by using physical force, sometimes even to the death. The woman’s way is different; gossip and ostracism are their solution methods. Actually, sometimes they can be more cruel to each other than men, because gossip and ostracism can sometimes be worse than death. ‘Social death’ can be the worst punishment that can be given to a woman. What must not be forgotten, though, is that this attitude punishes the future generations as well as the culprit. This means, the world of women needs to be at peace.