MCPA Support Staff Conference Session 1 – @maryland_MCPA

I am live blogging so please excuse the typos, etc. Maumi

Who Does She Think She Is? Karl Martinez-Doane, Director of Student Activities, MICA & Mahnoor Ahmed, Associate Director of Women’s Resources, Towson University

Have you ever caught yourself thinking or speaking negatively about other women in the work place? It’s okay, we have too. In this session, we aim to un-learn the harmful expectations and perceptions we have for ourselves and others as females in the workplace.

Video –

What is your definition of leadership? Do you consider yourself a leader?

– Leaders are listeners

– Leaders take charge but not necessarily positive

– Flexible – adapt to whatever is needed

– Diversity – work with different types of people

“Social Change Model of Leadership approaches leadership as a purposeful, collaborative, values-based process that results in positive social change. It describes leadership as a purposeful, collaborative, values- driven process, instead of a title or position. Leaders try to improve the groups or communities they are part of. In this approach to leadership, a “leader” is anyone who wants to work with others to make a difference.”

Quality of a good leader: (group comments) Communication – Listening – Transparency / Integrity – positive change – selflessness / responsibility – lead by example – jump in and do it /

Gender – how do these words relate to the societal view of men and women (group process)

– Purposeful (M) – humble (W) – versatile (w) – take risks/initiative (m)

– Directives – guidance – open to change (w)

– Communication – listening – transparency

– Performer / go-getter (m) – Selflessness / common good as they lead

– Integrity – vision – proactive – reactive

– Responsibility – flexible – lead by example

– Supportive – knowledge of their subject – respected by their group

– Jumping into it – Recognition of their team members –

*** It was hard because we thought the words could be either gender. There are leadership traits that are associated with just men and women but there are definitely some that are shared.

Are there roles that, if women demonstrate “male traits” in a role – how is she seen? When a woman deviates from traditional traits they are judged – example: Margaret Thatcher and Hillary Clinton

Organizational Environments ARE Gendered: The gendered nature of organizational structures “ensures that women have limited access to positions of power in the organizational hierarchy. Stereotypically masculine traits are still equated with good management practices.” (O’Neil, Hopkins & Bilimoria, 2008)

Video: Double-bind – Sheryl Sandberg (2013) TEDWomen Talk Dec 2010 DC – Women are not making it to the TOP of any fields

Video: Sheryl Sandberg – Success and Likeability are related. We have the right to “sit at the table”.

Mens can be really well liked for taking in charge but when women do it … are they a “B-word”?


– Supervisor said “We have reports that you talk in meetings” Ummm… I can’t talk? I shared my opinion but that was reported to her boss

– Example – teenager girl saying she

– Women are tough on women

– we don’t know what someone else is going through

Video: Catalyzing the next generation of women’s leadership: Ted*FiDiWomen – Women: 57% of college population & 60% of all college degrees – only 25-26% of all female faculty members are FT & tenured – Devanshi Patel (2013): “You can’t Be what you can’t See”

Leadership: only 21% of girls believe they have what it takes to be a leader / 44% of 8-year old girls want to be leaders / 8 is the peak age for girls’ leadership ambitions

How do we rewrite the story?

– Start with our self: accountability – self-perception – leadership development / building capacity – perception of other female leaders – self care, owning your own truth and also opening yourself up to other truths

– Self in the context of others: involvement in communities / groups – creating supportive communities / networks mentoring – raising each other up – advocacy on different levels

How will you rewrite the story? Saying even a negative in an affirming way – affirm people – leave a note card for people with an affirmation – hearing people talking badly in the office and maybe calling them out

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