This topic is v close to my daily life and I found this read v insightful on how women’s ability to lead is judged by email! Really?
The brilliant article asks what is the “right” tonal balance for a woman executive to use in her emails, but the real question should be, why does this conundrum exist in the first place?
Why do we perceive men’s voices as more authoritative by default, while “feminine speech” is innately marked and in need of fixing?
The truth is that in general, female public figures are judged by their speech significantly more than their male colleagues, just as they are judged more harshly by their appearance. I have experienced this directly in my career as a senior executive and public company CEO!
I hope that when it becomes more typical for women to lead, then there won’t be such a disproportionately tight margin of error for communication styles. But, the process of navigating the double bind will likely remain difficult as long as gender inequality exists.