Survival in uncertain times…Gender Dynamics

July 23, 2009 at 13:51 Leave a comment

Men and women bring different qualities to provide the answer

Bringing the masculine and feminine energy to work out a new blueprint….
Pondering on the current economic situation, how many of you recognise that the ‘survival of the fittest’ takes on a new meaning. The unthinkable has happened…the Titanic (known as the finance world) is sinking… and the boat has not enough lifeboats, the behaviour on board is crazed, desperate, the lower decks have locked the poor in, the rich grab for spaces, men walking over babies to get saved… was it like that? Maybe? Maybe not? But hey we’re in that place…and people are behaving badly, are in fear , are hiding money under the mattress, stopping the flow – and yet I am so pleased this has happened as once the boat goes down, the water will be calm again and a new world can get started – one that sets human beings first, and healthy relationships as key to business & life success simultaneously!

Surviving and ‘thriving’ is possible, but not as before…it’s critical that we create the future together, as men and women who value each other’s strength in terms of personal and professional contributions to the business mix.  We need to act as a community that welcomes both genders for their respective contribution.  But so often we hear rumbles within men and women’s conversation; can men and women do what they do best and honour the other? There is still inequality in pay and opportunities within the corporate world for women.  There are still few women in the boardroom even though there is a renewed desire for more women to move into the top positions.  How can we resolve this dilemma?

Taking a new perspective with new eyes

Our challenge is to discuss a new business blueprint that encompasses contributions from both masculine and feminine strengths rather than focusing too hard on what men and women have done to date and getting bogged down in the content of commercial constraints rather than reviewing the meaning of business in a new socio-economic equation.

Let’s look at a new blueprint.  Business in 2009, and onwards, needs both the masculine (the operation, the strategy, the profit motive, the logic and rationale, the risk taking) and the feminine (customer relationships, interpersonal collaboration, intuitive guidance and employee care) – these make the whole work so much better and more efficiently – it is here that the focus should be to develop a new blueprint on which to build our strengths as human beings, men and women, and our contribution to the economy and the society we all live in.  The value of a well-balanced integrated and gender-aware boardroom and top management team can be calculated in performance output and good relationships as well as financial forecasts.  Like a well-oiled, highly charged, all pistons firing engine in a Formula 1 racing car, so the leaders of any organization can utilize both masculine and feminine parts to make business run smoothly and efficiently. 

It is acknowledged by leading economists that in a descendant market, women come to the rescue. However we don’t need to tip the balance the other way! 

The new blueprint requires masculine and feminine characteristics to be fulfilled in appropriate balance, and all roles and functions working efficiently.  Here we focus attention on the alignment of how many men and women are required within this new blueprint to achieve a balance. We need to qualify gender differentials at a deeper level.  This is not just about men and women; it’s about masculine and feminine elements.  Whereas it has long been known that men in general bring logic, task, rationale, single-minded thinking and process as business strengths, some men bring their intuitive ‘emotional feminine’ energy to work as their best natural strength. It is commonly understood that women are more relationship focused, multi-tasking, nurturing, emotional, intuitive characters at heart, yet many women have a natural robust ‘masculine’ sense of business and bring that to the table. The confusion has occurred where women have changed their whole behaviour to match their ‘masculine’ brain and gone into business as a ‘man’, or a man feels he cannot utilize his intuitive nature in conflict with an expectation of male business behaviour.  Our view of gender differentials at a deeper level than the usual ‘male-female’ requires further exploration.

Do men really understand the true value of women – and vice versa?

For 200 years men’s business lives have not changed a great deal and over the last 60 years, women roles in business (and life) have changed enormously. Women entered into a male world of work, and that is the way it has been.  For many, it hasn’t worked as the maleness of business put an increasing strain on a woman’s life.  Men and women work differently.  We have different needs and create different requirements both in the way we relate to others and how we wish to be respected.  And yet we are naturally born to be the complement to the other. Like two computers, a PC and a MAC, men and women speak the same language from a different hard drive, and the mis- interpretations are everywhere!

Creating the new blueprint ‘together’ means bringing both parties into one conversation – not one into the other.

Who knows best? Men or women? Both and differently, we suggest!  When we’re planning the new blueprint for business, the new ‘Titanic’, to sail the waters of collaboration and co-operation and conscious parenting of sustainable business, we can consider now doing things in new ways.  We need first to evaluate what we both bring to the party and where the past has brought us to today.

We need to go deeper into gender differential

As we work and study the joys of masculine and feminine traits in business and in human nature – in both men and in women – we discover that the overall picture of gender dynamics is a deeper four way matrix than the usual male -female view. This allows us each to be more valued as our natural self, within our own gender and more importantly to understand relationships!!

Our ‘Gender Dynamics’ approach assesses and optimises natural gender characteristics from biology and physicality as well as natural mindset and emotion, deepens awareness and puts that into a full whole system performance delivery at the top (men and women). As mentioned, some women are naturally logical and rather male-process-minded (prefix M to F) while other offer a highly intuitive and have an extremely emotionally (pre fix F to M) sensitive view of business! Women with these different mindsets often don’t understand and support each other. If the natural gender differentials within each gender are grossly mis-understood, this slows progress – confuses men especially – and the business output suffers!!

Gender dynamics

Likewise Gender Dynamics encompasses a full continuum within the Male gender with pre-fixed with masculine M-feminine F variables, establishing our core gender by our biology.  We have integrated variables of physicality, observable behaviour and mind function. When we observe is that the more straight, more angular our bone structure in men or women, the more aligned we tend to be with the masculine mind functions and so we prefix M in either gender; or the more gentle, more curvy, more flexible and flowing, our body and body stance is then we tend to be aligned with the feminine mind functions. We may merely know this instinctively and from our natural mind-function, in which ever gender we are naturally or work it out by a process of elimination.  Our position can be mapped and recognized in our communication style.  This theory develops that idea that we have natural M and F ‘antennae’ on a core structure which is either male M or female F; hence we have four extremes positions; FM and MM (males) and MF and FF (females).    

When mis-understood, these different gender dynamics block the true authentic nature of collaboration

In studying the masculine and feminine brain patterns and styles of behaviour within genders, and the relationships especially, we can observe these antennae at work! Some women are more masculine minded and some feminine minded, yet both female; and the same in men, where some men being more masculine minded and some feminine minded. When we forget our biological base, then trouble can occur.  There are women who sabotage the natural role of women by behaving as a ‘man’ when she can actually be true to her feminine and still use her ‘masculine’ mind and perform better.  Gender Dynamics is not affected by sexual orientation. As this topic expands into relationships, we observe that polarity is important and we often enjoy polar opposite in both male-female relationships as well as same gender relationships. The gender dynamics map is a tool for improved smoother communication, great team work and sustainable outcomes; helping people to see themselves in new ways and not fixed by gender stereotypes.

Pauline’s own personal case story – I am a masculine-minded woman, I have mis-understood my gender dynamic myself over the years.  I enjoy having a logical mathematical mind set, use rational thinking more than emotional response; however I also have the multi-tasking and natural relationship skills that all female have innately and a growing sense of intuition. The latter has been something I have developed over the last five years as I recognised I was not being true to my ‘female’ core nature. In the past I would have easily played the ‘male’ part in business and ignored my feminine emotional strengths. Now I can fulfill the balance required.

Next steps into a gender based blueprint for business and life

If we learn more about our natural ‘gender dynamic’ type rather than purely our biological type, or our perceived ‘business stereotypes’, men and women can grow more awareness, become astutely robust in their natural gender differential, gain great ability to communicate effectively and build healthy relationships and develop a truly balanced business acumen. The benefits are measured in best performance and heightened delivery as a cohesive team. 

If we can utilize more effectively the assets of each gender type (between and within genders) and align these to business requirements, then the business needs will be addressed with a more practical knowledge about who does what best. This is actually about choosing the right pieces for the jigsaw… selected on merit...but also changing the jigsaw pieces around to draw a different final picture for people to work together.

We need to create ‘leaders’ who understand this new playing field…

At the moment people, especially in the corporate world, are scrabbling for position believing that life will go back to normal – not recognising (or wanting to) that, like the TITANIC, the economic landscape we knew back in the summer has sunk forever!!!

The balance of masculine and feminine energy, and therefore the contribution each makes to collaborative action, has to be lead by an enlightened ‘chair’ person (of either gender). The numbers of men and women in a team don’t necessarily mean it will balance automatically. In deed we observe many teams of men and women were the dysfunction is greater because of the mix because of the lack of value attributed to the gender dynamic relationships!!

The leader needs to be aware of the mix in front of him/her on many counts; gender dynamics, motivations, natural talents, inter-personal skills, knowledge and experience. Only then can the team work cohesively and successfully.

As we pointed out earlier, business needs both the masculine (the operation, the strategy, the profit motive, the logic and rationale, the risk taking) and the feminine (customer relationships, interpersonal collaboration, intuitive guidance and employee care) – these make the whole work so much better and more efficiently – it is here that the focus should be to develop the new blueprint on which to build our strengths as human beings.  

Creating the future together needs to start with a new blueprint, new leadership and new conversations!

Pauline_Crawford

Written by Pauline Crawford 2009. 

Pauline specialises in confidence building, relationship management and team engagement, and has created a special study of how physicality affects personality and relationships. A conference speaker of 20 years experience, Pauline’s key interests are in headline topics such as women, wellness and wealth. Her goal is to enable men and women to leverage their inner potential and achieve highly effective, passionate lives.

www.genderdynamics.co.uk  Tel 0208 998 7032

 

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Entry filed under: Leadership.

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