It is possible to become aware of our unconscious biases and be part of the change.


Last year, in an article I published in April, I told you about “Imposter Syndrome”. She opened the book from the sources I researched at the time and I had the opportunity to read several sources, especially about women’s struggle for equality in every society. As a woman working in a male-dominated industry, this topic has certainly caught my attention, and in this month’s article, I wanted to talk about a book that changed my mind and forced me to confront even my own prejudices, as well as some thoughts in this article. It. I don’t want to scare my audience by starting the article like this. This article is for everyone, men, women, gays, employed and unemployed, with or without children, young and old. It covers not only working life, but also all spheres of life where there is an interaction between a man and a woman. Therefore, I recommend that you do not stop reading at this place and spend five minutes of your life here. I hope this encourages you to read the writer’s book.

A book that has had a big impact on me lately and has allowed me to observe myself and others since I read it was written by Mary Ann Sighart The Authority Gap (translated as Authority Gap. Unfortunately, the book is not not translated into Turkish.) The title of the book also has a subtitle. There is a title: Why are women still treated less seriously than men, and what can we do about it? For this book, the author has many successful businessmen, scientists, politicians, journalists, etc., from Hillary Clinton to CEOs of large companies such as Allianz. He interviewed the woman and analyzed hundreds of studies. The idea of ​​writing this book reminded him of many years of successful reading and working with “wow girl what a great job you didThis is due to the comment “…

This was one of the points that opened my eyes. This comment and many others like it happen to all of us in our daily lives and we accept it as a normal thing. As a woman exercising regularly,Hey, what are you training for?”, the man in the same performance is not told this, because the man can do it, but the woman is considered not.

Unfortunately, unless proven otherwise, men are automatically perceived as competent in their field, while a woman with the same education and experience is considered inexperienced or inadequate unless she proves herself over and over again. It can only gain legitimacy if it succeeds in succession. In a small mistake, his entire competence is called into question again.

She is supposed to be younger (lower in seniority) than many women in the professional business world. One of the main reasons for this is that women are more modest and do not boast about their seniority. So why are women generally more modest? This is the fun part; when women change their behavior slightly and become more confident or blunt, it is considered offensive or arrogant. So no matter how they behave, double standards cannot be eliminated. While for men the same situation is interpreted as confident and competent, for women different adjectives are chosen.

Another conclusion mentioned in the book is that he prefers to remain silent, expressing less of his opinion in business meetings or social gatherings (!). The main reason for this behavior is that a woman’s ideas are not accepted due to an unconscious bias, no matter how logical they are on this platform. Another common situation is that when a man expresses the same thought in the same setting, he gets approval, even if he says it right after his girlfriend. Unfortunately, these situations, which we do not know about, but which occur frequently, cause women to speak less in meetings and avoid expressing their opinions. As a rule, they tend to express their opinions in private conversations. Another thing I didn’t know about until I read the book is the constant intervention of women in business meetings or social events. No matter how modern you are, a woman with a flat voice is easily interrupted, while men are usually expected to complete a sentence. Also, although it was the woman’s turn to ask for votes, the man said:Sorry, I know what you are waiting for, but I will say one thing.He can take the woman’s turn under the guise of politeness. This behavior is usually not applied to males unless there is a dominant alpha character in the environment.

You can observe the situation your girlfriends are facing on the platforms you are on, whether it be work environments or social gatherings, and you can immediately find plenty of supporting examples.

Another dilemma is mentioned in the book. As the effeminate image of women increases, its influence on men increases much more. The less feminine usually makes less of an impression than two women of the same ability. Oh, but even if you are a very beautiful woman, this time your competence will be called into question and you will say “stupid blondeetc. You are also branded with sexist definitions. It is also a grueling battle because the more knowledgeable and competent you are as a woman, the more unattractive you become, and in order to make a difference, you need to have an attractive, feminine, submissive demeanor in order for you could gain trust. But if you’re too effeminate, this time you need to prove your competence even more. Isn’t it too difficult and tiring? Having to display such a wide range of behaviors, unfortunately, increases the likelihood of making mistakes and failing to win the trust of women.

If you are playing a very competent and authoritative role as a woman, you are expected to be warmer and overly constructive than a man in the same situation, so that you are not perceived as an overbearing manager. A man with the same attitude is described as a good manager, while a woman is described as a tyrant, despot, control freak, etc. can be defined as.

Unfortunately, this unconscious discrimination or prejudice is observed not only between the two sexes. The discrimination of women against women, that is, the internal hatred of women, is an indisputable fact. It is a product of false teachings, such as the inequality between men and women in society that we encountered in childhood, the wrong balance between parents, and the illusion that men are the stronger sex …

So, no matter how open-minded, smart, far-sighted we are, and we want a world with equality, it is not very possible for us to change and change the world without reading such resources that will raise our awareness and notice our unconscious biases and microaggressions.

The book has various suggestions for educators and parents working in different fields. In this article, I will only mention a few of them below. You can become part of the change just by seeing it in yourself.

  • While efforts to achieve equality continue in all areas of society, it must be recognized that in 2023 there is still a large gap between the two sexes. And we can do this by sharing the best evidence-based scientific resources. So you can start by reading this book and give it to the people you want to impress.
  • Identify and study how your judgments of that person’s competence differ based on the gender of the person you’re dating.
  • When you meet a man and a woman at the same time, pay attention to whether you greet the man first.
  • In your work or social environment, be aware that a woman is interrupted more often than a man, and you do the same, and inform the people around you about this.
  • Stop confusing confidence with competence.
  • Give feedback to your peers when they display this behavior, especially if you are a man.
  • When you admire a woman’s accomplishments or accomplishments, would you do the same for a man?” and, if the answer is no, investigate the cause of the implicit bias.
  • If you automatically find dating a competent and successful woman unattractive, ask yourself why. Will repulsive sides also be repulsive in man?
  • If any of the unconscious discriminatory behavior mentioned above occurs in the social environment you are in, report it to that person and the community you are in. Include as many people as possible in the change.

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