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Did He Just Call Me a Whiner?

Despite everything, no one can dictate who you are to other people. ~Prince We hear a lot of talk about the difference in communication styles between the sexes and yet sometimes it can still be a little shocking when you find yourself face to face with one of those “different” interactions. A few months ago I was talking to a male colleague about a project that we were working on. One of our team members threw out an idea and I had several questions. During my string of questions, my colleague remarked, “why are you whining?” Wait… what?! Did he just call me a whiner? OH. NO. HE. DIDN’T!!! When did asking questions become whining? Can we just say I saw RED?! Because the truth of the matter is, he NEVER would have said that to one of the guys. EVER!! And how should I respond? Do I stop and address the question? Do I defend myself? Do I pretend I didn’t hear that and simply stay focused on the topic at hand, because at the end of the day, I still need answers to my questions? Is that a headache forming in my head right now? So many questions raced through my head in .02 seconds. I wish I could tell you that I remained calm and politely asked him to repeat the question, but that isn’t quite how it went down. Instead, it sounded more like “Did you just call me a whiner?!” Fortunately, the situation didn’t escalate beyond there. Everyone took a deep breath, regrouped, apologies were issued and my questions were answered. However, it made...
Is Your Company’s Culture to Blame for Decreased Employee Engagement?

Is Your Company’s Culture to Blame for Decreased Employee Engagement?

“Both men and women want to work for organizations that recognize talent in all its varieties.” — Orit Gadiesh Employee engagement is a big topic right now in the marketplace and for good reason. A poll by Gallup states, “less than one-third of U.S. workers were engaged in their jobs in 2014.” This means that the majority (51%) of employees were “not engaged” and “17.5% were ‘actively disengaged’ in 2014.” The lack of employee engagement costs U.S. companies billions of dollars each year in lost productivity, opportunities, and turnover. So what can organizational leaders do about it? Take a look at your company’s culture. According to a recent article in Harvard Business Review, an organization’s culture has a direct impact on employee engagement over time. The interesting part is that for men, ambition and confidence went up, while for women it went down drastically after two years with the organization. Why the disparity? The article states that women reported, “their direct supervisors don’t know their career aspirations, or what to say to support them. Others reported feedback like ‘you’re not cut out for’ top management, or ‘you don’t really want it.’” With the aging baby boomer population, who hold many of the leadership roles within organizations and with nearly 60% of college graduates being women, companies can ill-afford to ignore these findings. However, the truth is, many organizational leaders simply are not equipped with the skills and tools necessary to properly coach their team members. If you’d like to learn more about a simple, proven coaching process designed to equip your managers and supervisors with the skills needed to...
I was Humiliated and Mortified!

I was Humiliated and Mortified!

My first job out of college and my introduction to corporate America was with a labor union, which was predominantly middle-aged, blue collar male. And here I am, a young attractive woman. I felt as if I had literally been thrown to the wolves. My boss had a volatile temper and thought that he was doing me a favor and had given me “a wonderful life” despite the hostile environment in which I worked. I can recall a time when the VP called me into his office. He’d just been reprimanded because of a task that he failed to complete. Once in his office, he proceeded to yell at me saying, “What the #$%^ is wrong with you?!” Somehow his lack of initiative was my fault. In that instance I managed to muster up the courage to stand my ground and tell him that he wasn’t going to speak to me that way. However, it didn’t stop the blatant disrespect or eliminate my feelings of fear and intimidation. I can also remember one evening while at a company party, one of my male coworkers walked over and placed two balloons on my chest, right in front of everyone. I immediately ran out of the room. I was HUMILIATED and MORTIFIED! How could he do something like that? What was he thinking? When I escalated the issue, he said he didn’t remember doing anything like that. And apparently no one in attendance that evening could recall it either. Therefore, I was questioned about whether it really happened or not. After his half-hearted apology, which went something like, “if I did that...