when ‘gender’ carries too much weight

Because I did a lot of training documentation and presentation at my last job, the director of my department at work has asked me to produce training documentation for another department’s access to the company Sharepoint site.  I got with the project manager within my department over that area of Sharepoint and she provided the training documentation she used back in June of this year for the training of said personnel.  I sent a copy of the docs to my director with a note explaining that I would create nothing different than what has already been presented.

I am interested to see what his response will be.

It wouldn’t be something of interest for me if it weren’t for something that occurred a couple employers past.

A coworker and I managed a large Oracle database for configuration management.  One afternoon one of the group supervisors walked into our area and asked my coworker a question.  She gave the perfect answer.  He then turned and walked to my desk, just across from hers, and asked me the same question.  I gave the exact answer she had given.  His response – “Thank you Marc, I figured you would know.”

After he left my coworker and I just stared at each other.  We gave him the same exact answer, but he only accepted mine.  Figure it had to be a “gender” thing.  Of course, if that’s true, I couldn’t figure out why he would ask her in the first place if he wasn’t going to accept her answer.  And I might understand his answer had I said something different.  But I gave the same answer – word for word – that she had given.

Sometimes I think a person’s gender carries a LOT more impact to people than it should…

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8 thoughts on “when ‘gender’ carries too much weight

  1. Gender bias is institutional which means that we absorb it and if we don’t stop ourselves act on it subconsciously.

    There are certain features that are common to institutional racism, sexism and stigma.

    1. The bias is normalized and rarely questioned.

    2. The bias is reflected in everyday life and often internalized by those affected.

    3. The target of the bias is dehumanized and/or deemed stupid.

    4. The target of the bias is held to higher standards of perfection which are used to prove the truth of the bias.

    5. When people do see the wrongness of the bias they resort to indifference because they can’t imagine changing it.

    Liked by 1 person

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