Advanced search

Help me find an article on why men prefer male opinions please

(24 Posts)
penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Thu 12-May-16 12:30:47

I work in a male dominated industry. Yesterday I did a presentation on something technical to a group of customers, all middle aged men. Throughout the presentation, whenever the customers had any technical questions, they turned to my two male colleagues to ask them. My colleagues, instead of directing the question back at me, proceeded to answering them. This really boiled my piss but I remained professional and polite so didn't say anything. (Important customers so I didn't want to cause a scene.)

The subject is my expertise and I could full well have answered their questions as well as my colleagues, if not better.

One of my colleagues have just sent me an email with some suggestions on how to improve my presentation. The major one being that I must have come across as a bit unsure as the customers were directing their questions to him and not me. (He asked if I had noticed them doing this!!!)

I might possibly have come across as unsure, I didn't feel like I did but I'm not ruling it out. However I'm sure the main reason they didn't asked me was because men don't think women know shit and prefer asking men! (I was also 20 years younger than everyone else in the room.)

I want to reply and say I did indeed notice, and to point him in the direction of an article that explains why men tend to do this but can't find any. Does anyone know of a good one?

BarbarianMum Thu 12-May-16 13:12:40

'Fraid not, I hope someone else can help.

It used to happen to me a lot, esp with middle age men (my favourite was the time in a meeting that the developers insisted on addressing questions to the male work experience student who'd accompanied me who knew jack shit about the business in hand). Not so much nowadays except when I'm doing anything regarding Forestry, which is still very much a male preserve.

Bit rubbish that your colleages didn't redirect questions back to you though. That would annoy me more than the clients attitude.

LurcioAgain Thu 12-May-16 13:18:48

No articles, I'm afraid, but you could always send him this

scallopsrgreat Thu 12-May-16 13:26:16

I've got this one Why Aren’t We Talking About How Boys And Men Feel About A Woman President which although isn't directly about men preferring male opinions does cover it.

LurcioAgain Thu 12-May-16 13:32:06

That's a fantastic, if massively depressing, article, Scallops.

scallopsrgreat Thu 12-May-16 13:38:40

It's brilliant isn't it. Soraya Chemaly is often very good but she nails it here!

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Thu 12-May-16 13:46:58

Brilliant article, but I don't think he'll read all of that. I think I need a short and concise one?

Love the comic as well! grin

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Thu 12-May-16 14:37:05

Ok, I sent an email explaining the Goldberg paradigm and linked to a couple of articles. And suggested that he directed the questions back to me.

I got a reply saying I should have been in charge and just stepped in and answered them.

BarbarianMum Thu 12-May-16 14:46:03

<<I got a reply saying I should have been in charge and just stepped in and answered them.>>

And did he/they give you time to do so? A significant pause so you could come in rather than jump in?

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Thu 12-May-16 14:54:27


BarbarianMum Thu 12-May-16 15:10:16

Yeah, didn't think so hmm.

singingsixpence82 Thu 12-May-16 20:34:37

Here's something about a transgender man (previously a woman) working in a technical field. He says he felt he was treated with far more respect when he became a man. Maybe you could raise this issue with HR and say you experienced the incident as sexual discrimination and that you felt your colleagues dealt with it badly. I think these things really need to be challenged. There's research that shows that when women and men are equally competent women are still significantly less confident and it's incidents like these that probably cause that.

"One of my colleagues have just sent me an email with some suggestions on how to improve my presentation. The major one being that I must have come across as a bit unsure as the customers were directing their questions to him and not me".

This is an interesting sentence. Your colleague who was in the room (I presume) does not say he perceived you as being in any way unsure but seems to have worked backwards from the observed fact that questions were directed to others. I don't think he thought you were unsure. But was equally (or purposefully) blind to the sexism of you being by-passed and felt he had to pin it on you somehow. Really not fair.

singingsixpence82 Thu 12-May-16 20:37:37

Sorry - here's the link.

And here's an article about a study on confidence. Although I know you've already replied.

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Fri 13-May-16 07:47:41

Thanks singing. I think the confidence bit did shine through when I didn't go ahead and answered the questions despite them not asking me. I was told I should've taken control of the presentation.

I admit that I probably should have but was thinking that I might have come across as rude if I did.

This is something men can do easily but when women do it, it comes across as a bit bitchy. I think my colleague is only looking at this from his point of view and for him this is something that

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Fri 13-May-16 07:48:34

Posted too soon!

What I was trying to say was that when men look at situations from their own experience of it, they don't realise that it is harder for women to do this.

weaselwords Fri 13-May-16 07:56:14

Reply to your colleague, that if his feedback is genuine, you also have some feedback for him; that he jumps in and answers questions instead of looking to you to answer. As part of a team, he can support you in this, rather than undermine you and make his poor behaviour your fault. He is mistaking your good manners for being "unsure". Then also kick him in the crotch as "feedback". Maybe rephrase and don't kick him, but you get my gist.

Honestly, who does this idiot think he is? He blatantly undermines you, then makes it your fault. I have feminist rage on your behalf.

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Fri 13-May-16 08:00:43

He used to be my manager but I got promoted recently so we are now at the same level. I think that's why he thinks he can give me this helpful advice...

RufusTheReindeer Fri 13-May-16 08:31:25

Talked to my husband about this

I am not happy with his response

If we get divorced i am blaming your clients grin

weaselwords Fri 13-May-16 08:46:08

I'm trying to think how I "take control" in meetings and presentations. There is a lot you can do right at the start, to set yourself up as the person in charge.

You will be seen as bossy and strident. It's ok.

Rufus is probably married to the "helpful" soul, who likes to offer his unsolicited advice. He would never in a million years realise that he wasn't being helpful and was part of the problem because he cannot see the situation from OPs point of view at all.

penisbeakerlaminateflooringetc Fri 13-May-16 09:10:06

Haha Rufus, what did your husband say?

RufusTheReindeer Fri 13-May-16 09:14:42


he is lovely and very good with obvious sexism if you see what i mean and he is not one for advice grin but you are right about not seeing it from the OPs point of view

The main problem is that he will not take some things at face value

So instead of saying "well i wasnt there but from what she said that sounds like a dreadful problem" he says "i cant comment as i wasnt there, she may well have seemed unsure and it may not be sexism...but i wasnt there and cant comment"

What i should have said was would he not find it annoying if it was the other way around or hapoening to a black person, but i just threw my toys out of the pram

It can be completely ingrained in most of us can't it, i hear all the time from friends peoplejust cant see...and i come across as a bit of a nutter harping on about something that doesn't exist

Anyway weasel said (and dh to be fair) you may well have to take control, but it can be very difficult

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

scallopsrgreat Fri 13-May-16 10:49:48

Ahh the helpful advice from male colleagues. I used to get 'advice' all the time from male rowers when I was coaching women. I even had another (male) coach interrupt one of my athletes during quite an intense training session, so she stopped what she was doing, to tell her what he felt she was doing wrong hmm. Whilst I was standing there. I used to think it was me, I was doing it wrong (I was fairly new to it and probably lacking in a bit of confidence). I now know it was them. That is one of the benefits of feminism.

singingsixpence82 Fri 13-May-16 13:58:50

Didn't mean to imply that I thought it was probable you were underconfident OP. Obviously you acknowledge it's a possibility but I would tend to think that you'd have been more aware of being underconfident if you actually had been. I was more trying to say that this is the kind of thing that makes women less confident, even if they start off with plenty of self belief.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now