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to think that women are generally worse to work for than men?

(43 Posts)
choufleur Wed 22-Jul-09 17:50:23

Obviously not me - i'm a great manager wink but all of the very senior female managers i have to work with (i'm in the middle) seem to think the only way to manage is to undermine people and force their views and ways of working on staff who are further down the pecking order than them. Men i work for don't seem to do it anywhere near as much.

bigchris Wed 22-Jul-09 17:52:20

the one i work for only seems to recruit men shock

Besom Wed 22-Jul-09 17:53:30

Well yes, you're being extremely unreasonable because you are making a sweeping generalisation based on the few people that you work for.

MrsMattie Wed 22-Jul-09 17:54:01

It hasn't been my experience. The only female boss I have ever had was great - supportive and inspiring. All other bosses have been male and complete wankers, with the exception of my current male boss, who is great.

mumblechum Wed 22-Jul-09 17:54:09

Mmm, thinking about it I've only ever had a female boss once and she's my current boss. She's really rather horrid, expects me to work overtime to cover court cases then when I asked for some time off in lieu so I could have some time with my son in the summer hols she refused.

Flexibility? One way street it seems.

southeastastra Wed 22-Jul-09 17:59:48

i've worked for some right old bags

fattybumbum Wed 22-Jul-09 18:03:01

Any female bosses (I was a teacher)I've had have been AWFUL - which makes me sad as I consider myself a diehard feminist. In my experience I've found them to be deeply aggressive and emotionally hard. When I returned to work after maternity leave my female bosses (despite all having kids themselves) were hugely unsympathetic and made nasty comments about me taking a whole year's maternity (they'd only had 3 months in their day), saying things like how I would have to be retained like an NQT because I'd have forgotten everything due to being off for so long. Strangely, the male bosses were very kind and supportive.

I am guessing it is because the women have had to be a certain 'type' to get ahead in a sexist society ie tougher than the men (I am thinking of women who are 50+ here). Mind you, I have seen younger women coming up who have a very post-Thatcher, Spice girl 'me, me, me' mentality, thinking they know it all at 25 and storming their way up the greasy pole. I don't think I'd want any of them as a boss either.

notevenamousie Wed 22-Jul-09 18:04:08

My current boss is one of 3 female bosses I've had - and she has a SAHF for her children, so she really doesn't get me, a single mum to a 2 year old. But she is a great person, and I would go to her in her professional capacity, iyswim. She is a tough act to follow, as the next-most-senior female.

Ewe Wed 22-Jul-09 18:09:09

I completely agree, IME men are much better to work for. Less bullshit, more supportive and understanding, I miss working for a man.

Noonki Wed 22-Jul-09 18:09:28

Disagree - I've had two great female bosses in a row and one terrible male one (he threw a cupn of coffee at someone because he was in a mood shock)

AxisofEvil Wed 22-Jul-09 18:10:07


I've had good female bosses and bad female bosses. But then I've had bad male bosses and bad female bosses in equal measure.

There is interesting literature out there on women's expectations of women managers as they sub-consiously expect them to be more sympathetic and judge them more harshly when they're not. Not saying that's what is happening with the OP of course.

TheCrackFox Wed 22-Jul-09 18:23:20

Obviously, when I was a manager I was great to work for.

It pains me to say it but the few female managers I had were awful. They made the Sigourney Weaver character in "Working Girl" seem like a pushover. They were very much of the Margaret Thatcher mould - to be successful you had to be a ball crusher.

Portofino Wed 22-Jul-09 18:32:19

In my experience, the women I have worked for have been awful. Mostly it seems like they needed to "prove" themselves all the time (which is quite sad really) leading to much pettiness. I've had some bad male bosses too, but generally you could just ignore them and get on with stuff. They seemed to feel more secure in their position so as long as you SAID the right thing you could get away with murder.

AliGrylls Wed 22-Jul-09 18:32:59

The reason why most female bosses seem to be bitches (particularly those in very senior positions) is because they have had to prove themselves more than male counterparts and have probably had to develop a thick skin. When you chip away at the surface women can be infinitely better bosses (although I do think women are less laid back and more organised).

Axis - I think what you are saying is also right about judging women harshly. I know I do it. Women are their own worst enemies at times.

purpleduck Wed 22-Jul-09 18:34:46

I've worked for women mostly, and they have all been fab.
My current boss is pretty amazing - I wanna be like her when I grow up wink

cthea Wed 22-Jul-09 18:39:32

I found women bosses more controlling, checking, keeping track of everything. Male bosses seemed more hands-off and letting me get on with things. All my female bosses have been supportive & understanding, though.

elvislives Wed 22-Jul-09 18:43:17

In the main the female bosses I've worked or have been horrible, with only a couple of exceptions; and the males mainly OK.

Having problems ATM with a chain of female bosses who never seem to quite get around to anything they are supposed to be sorting out. Don't know what the answer is there.

funtimewincies Wed 22-Jul-09 18:48:03

I agree with fattybumbum unfortunately. All the female headteachers I've encountered have been less effective at dealing with problems such as poor behaviour and less consistent in their dealings with their own staff sad.

I'm sure that there are some lovely female bosses out there too, just my own experiences haven't backed this up.

MrsChemist Wed 22-Jul-09 18:56:47

My last two bosses have been women and they seem a lot more driven than the male bosses I've had. It's as if they have to prove themselves to everyone. They were both landladies and I suppose that makes a difference, because it is a very male dominated profession.
However, I found that this attitude made them exactly the kind of managers you would want. You want the business you work for to succeed, so you want the managers to be the best they can be and to put 100% effort into everything they do.

choufleur Wed 22-Jul-09 19:00:47

agree there are some good women managers about (despite what i said originally) but at the moment the three directors i work to just seem to want the earth, ask for conflicting work, and pay no heed to anything else me and my team may have on. On the other hand the two male directors i work to are far more chilled and actually understand that i may have other things that need doing and listen to my opinion on subjects that i know about and tbh they don't really as they are not expected to be experts at my job - that's what i'm paid for.

ABetaDad Wed 22-Jul-09 19:03:24

I have had a great female boss and a great male boss.

My DW though does tend to agree with Portofino on this point:

"Mostly it seems like they needed to "prove" themselves all the time (which is quite sad really) leading to much pettiness."

DW says that some women basically do all they can to put other women down around them and especially women who take time off for childcare and pregnancy and basically suck up to the men above them and pander to their male predjudices about women. She says that some women are actually more sexist than many men about other women. The more high powered and more male dominated the profession the worse the female bosses are to other women.

DebiNewberry Wed 22-Jul-09 19:05:19

YABU but I think you know it.

YANBU to be fed up with your managers atm.

My director has a terrible rep, I was dreading working for her, but in reality has been the best manager I have ever worked for. I can only presume that her bad rep is because women are penalised for behaviour that nobody blinks at in a man, generally.

mrsboogie Wed 22-Jul-09 19:08:57

hmmm.. my male boss has apparently dismissed all the very hard (and way above my grade)work I did last year because I went on maternity leave, with the following all encompassing phrase on my appraisal "you did your best in the circumstances" AND yesterday told me after I had taken on a massive project "it's ironic that you take this on now when you haven't the time" I asked what he meant and he said " well you have other commitments now" (meaning a baby) I said but I work full time and having a baby has not impacted n my work HAS IT'?? and he said "oh I know, yeah" and wandered off. hmm

he would NEVER say this to his male staff who have kids

ZephirineDrouhin Wed 22-Jul-09 19:13:06

Yes YABU of course. But while we're making huge generalisations based on limited experience I feel compelled to say that by far the best two bosses I have ever had were both gay women. No idea why this should be - entirely coincidental I expect.

Think DebiNewberry has probably hit the nail on the head.

TheCrackFox Wed 22-Jul-09 19:14:03

I was made redundant whilst on maternity leave - by my female boss. hmm. Before I announced my pregnancy she was talking about promoting me.

Some people are just not cut out to be bosses. Nothing to do with gender.

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