Does it make a difference whether the manager is a woman or man? Would you prefer to work for a woman or a man? Today in healthcare facilities, it is possible that your supervisor or manager could be a woman or a man. At one time it was primarily a woman’s career, but today men as well as women become nurses and many male nurses climb the career ladder quickly and many work in management. So the question becomes, as stated in the title, “man or woman”. Does it make a difference to you?
Why Is This Question Even Needed?
There should not be a need to ask this question, but everyone probably relates differently to men and to women. Some people have difficulty taking orders from a woman and some have a problem taking orders from a male. It probably goes way back to childhood and the relationship he had with his parents. If he resented being told to do something that Dad told him to do, then it may be difficult for him to relate to a male manager and take orders from him.
Healthcare used to be dominated by women. Having to work for a male nurse was not something that a nurse had to deal with. Nurses were women and they managed other nurses. The only men that nurses had to deal with were the doctors. Nurses had to take orders from them, but only as it pertained to a particular patient’s care. The doctors did not control other aspects of what the nurse does. Nurses were in control of nurses. Doctors did not control the nurses. The managers were female as there were no male nurses at one time. Nurses did not have to be involved with the question as to who they would prefer to work for.
How Does The Staff See The Female Manager
It has been said that women are nurturing. I am not sure that this is true when the woman reaches management. Sometimes it seems like the nurturing attributes of women is no longer there. However, this is one trait that women have that hopefully has a bearing on how she manages.
Nurses have learned from the beginning that they need to be in control and take charge. They are responsible for lives so they must tell patients what to do and follow up to make sure that they do it. This translate to management, too. They need to tell their staff what to do and make sure they do it. The point I am making is that women are used to taking charge and being in control. This can make others feel secure and safe.
Many women are supportive and warm. They have learned to be understanding while still being firm. They tend to listen to what is being said. The way that women communicate with each other is different than with a man. Most women understand the emotional world of women and understand each other’s moods. Women, also, usually understand the demands placed on her by family needs and life.
How Does The Staff See The Male Manager
Many men are all business. They focus on business and nothing else. Family issues are left for the woman to deal with, which allows the man to just focus on business. Men don’t want to hear excuses or reasons for something. They are not as open and understanding as their counterpart. Compassion may be missing.
What Is Important In Leadership?
I am not sure that it even matters. We kind of have to take whatever we get. We do not make the decision as to who the manager is. However, we do have to be able to relate to the “boss”. I am sure that there are many who will differ on what I have said about how we see a female boss verses a male one, and that is OK.
We all see and relate to each other differently for various reasons and this is probably what should be explored. It, of course, depends on our previous interactions with men and women in the past. If one has had a bad experience with a man in the past life we will probably have a difficult time relating to a male manager in the future and vice versa. It is not so much related to specific traits in a certain gender as it is in experiences and especially if that person is in a position of authority.
There may be other traits or behavior trends that one looks for in a manager, too. Some of these may be trust, honesty, open and open mindedness. Is the person open with others, does he listen, is he understanding? What are his leadership abilities and experience. Does he support and back up his staff? Is he there to help when it is needed? Does he run to the next level of management with every little thing? Can you trust him? Does he keep things confidential when he needs to? These may be some things that are more important in any manager, rather than specific to one gender or the other?
The Relevancy Of All Of This In Other Businesses
Most of this has been geared to healthcare where it is still primarily a woman’s world. It is changing and there are a lot more male nurses today and many are promoted to management soon after starting with a facility. In addition to this, upper management and the people responsible for the whole facility are men and many of these people are not nurses or doctors. They are business men that have managed large corporations unrelated to health care.
In the business world, today, there is a greater mix of men and women as CEO’s and the people running big businesses. At one time, it was usually the men that were in these positions. All of this points out that today we all need to learn to work with both genders and respect their positions. This translates to all types of businesses and includes the up and coming world of on-line businesses.
There are many female entrepreneurs in areas of business. Again, probably there are biases toward men and women in management in brick and mortar shops and on-line businesses. If any of us are starting their own business, we need to be aware of this when we are relating and selling to our customers. Does someone not buy from me because I am a woman and the customer had had a bad experience with a female manager in the past. We all need to be aware of these biases and try to breakdown these barriers.
I do have two on-line businesses that are healthcare related. I think that what is more important in any of business is all of the behaviors that I mentioned above. Trust is vital. It does not matter if I am a woman or a man. We must all work on this if we are to gain their confidence in us and what we are promoting. Managers need support to help us to hang in and build their trust. “Rome was not built in a day”; trust is not build in a day, either. Sometimes it is hard to do this. Seek some assistance in doing this. Again it is not a male/female issue.
I have found a great company that provides support for those that are in this position. All of us that have been doing this for a while know how frustrating it can be. Who is best to do this than those that have been in this position? The name of the company is Wealthy Affiliate. They not only have a great support system 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, but have a great educational program to teach anyone that is interested in starting an on-line business how to start a website and develop this and how to market it.
If anyone is interested in learning more about starting their own on-line business, click here.
If we took a survey we would probably find that people do have a preference in whether would prefer to work for a man or woman. If we asked why some would be able to tell you why and give specific examples. Most of the time, the real reason probably goes way back to their childhood, but most would probably give concrete examples of something that happened in their last job.
However, it probably relates more to traits or behaviors that we all think are important in managers and that are not specific to one gender or the other. These are the things that managers need to work on to get rid of all of the traits that might be gender specific.