Remember that old “men are from Mars, women are from Venus” shtick? What did that really mean?
Here are 10 ways, based on real science, to help you break down gender differences in everything from networking to negotiating:
1. Men often overstate their abilities; women understate them.
Do your best to find the truth somewhere in the middle.
2. To men, “help” is a four-letter word.
Don’t give it to them unless they ask.
3. Men buy; women shop.
Keep that in mind when determining how slow or fast you should move.
4. Gender behavior is based on brain structure and body chemistry.
Differences in estrogen, testosterone and oxytocin affect moods, behaviors and decisions.
5. Gender behavior changes with age.
As men and women get older, testosterone and estrogen levels decrease respectively. This results in women becoming more assertive and men more accommodating.
6. Men decide; women ruminate.
After making a decision, the male brain shuts off. Female brains, however, continue to worry and second-guess. So when a female colleague says, “I’ll have to think about it,” that usually means she does need to think about it.
7. Women are better at negotiating for a group; men are better at negotiating for themselves.
Think about this when appointing project leaders.
8. Women tend to avoid conflict situations; men tend to avoid emotional scenes.
Again, this is an important consideration when assigning tasks.
9. Women respond better to stories than facts.
It may take you longer to state your case, but that’s not the point.
10. Women have better peripheral vision and will most likely notice that family photo on your desk.
What better way to get to know your new boss than having her ask about your spouse and kids!