How to deal with mansplaining in the workplace
Have you recently been made to feel like you’re less than a co-worker or employee in your workplace? Or maybe it’s happened to you time and time again and you’ve only just become aware of the negative effect it may have had on you in your work environment.
Well, unfortunately, it seems almost impossible to stop but there are some very effective ways to cope with it by using the simple steps in this helpful guide.
But firstly, what exactly is ‘Mansplaining’?
Mansplaining = The explanation of something by a man, typically to a woman, in a manner regarded as condescending or patronizing.
With this in mind, it further implements the issues regarding men and women and further reinforces problems between inequality in the workplace, with men being seen as the perpetrator in the condescending remarks made to women.
An example of Mansplaining in the workforce is found through the ways in which men overpower women in professional meetings. In accordance with this, a study in 2012 showed that women spoke only 25% of the time during a meeting and often were disregarded; whereas men made up 75% of the conversation.
During this study it was also shown that women were left out of the conversation.
What are the consequences of being subject to mansplaining?
A lessened feeling of self-worth in the workplace
Because of the condescending or patronising nature of the actions involved in mansplaining, it can cause a significant decrease in self worth and realisation of one’s worth in the workplace. Any job/career should be a safe environment for all workers; however, one where confidence is reduced is burdening and harmful.
Declined ability to feel capable of achieving tasks
Sometimes you’re subject to mansplaining consistently, it can cause you to lose concentration and focus on the important tasks you had planned for the day. You should be able to carry out all your tasks for the day in a concise and proper manner.
Feeling as though you aren’t seen as equal in the workplace
In any workplace or meetings, all conversations should be carried out in a non-condescending manner. However, for many women this is not the reality. Instead the conversation can often be difficult to be apart of and be heard.
How to cope with it
Redirect Conversation to another women in the workplace
Because it’s been shown through study that women only speak 25% of the time in interviews, it can be very difficult to attempt to get some words in. However, because of this statistic, it has since led women to band together and this way when one woman speaks up another can redirect the questions; this has been shown to assert more control of the space and environment, leading a much more desirable outcome for women who are often disregarded in that environment.
Speak loudly to be heard
Unfortunately, due to the immense difficulty women need to be heard during work settings, it can mean that raising their voice is one of the most effective ways to gain the attention they need. Having the same level of input in the conversation as men is one of the key ways to making an equal workplace environment; this way all the views and opinions are filtered through from every person equally which leads to a less biased result.
Call out mansplaining behaviour
Sometimes, no matter how hard you try, it can be difficult to voice our opinion, no matter how loud you speak; this leads many women to stand up for themselves and call out the behaviour that isn’t appropriate. For many people this type of confrontation can be extremely difficult to reach, however it has been seen to be very effective at attempting to lessen the behaviour and educate men or anyone who has been issuing the behaviour to stop and reduce it.
At any point in time where you may feel it’s necessary and right to educate men or any perpetrators about mansplaining and the negative effects it can carry, then it’s very important to speak up and make sure that it’s known.
However the word has since been regarded as a very clear issue in the workforce that many people have been subject to with a negative personal experience.
This is why creating awareness is one of the most effective ways in which it can be reduced. By ensuring those who may not be aware of it can understand it; especially since the term is relatively new.
And so, the unfortunate reality for many women in the workforce is that mansplaining occurs by any mansplainer. For some it may have been a one-off, for others it’s a daily hassle.
Either way it’s important that you understand how to cope with it if you’re ever faced with the difficulty that is carried with it and to do this it’s best to band together with others who are facing the difficulty to attempt to put it to an end.
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