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Friday, November 16, 2007

Female Stereotypes

As pointed out in this New York Times article, what people consider the most important leadership quality varies with geographic location. Not very surprising. More surprising: whether women are thought to have a given quality depends on whether it's considered the most important leadership quality. So, in the United States where being good at inspiring others is considered the most important leadership quality but being a good delegator is not, women are often considered good at delegating but not very good at inspiring others. It's the other way around in Nordic countries, where being good at delegating is considered the most important leadership quality but being good at inspiring others is inessential to what constitutes an ideal leader. In these countries women are thought to be good at inspiring others but not very good at delegating. The lesson: the only quick and easy way to climb the career ladder is to get a sex-change operation.

(Thanks to Susanna Schellenberg for the link)

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