For quite some time, I have had a bit of an issue with the famous saying ‘Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man’. The first thing that might come to mind is probably Steve Harvey’s bestselling book and romantic comedy film; starring great female actors like Gabrielle Union, Meagan Good, Taraji P Henson and more. In this romantic comedy, the leading women follow certain guidelines on how to supposedly outsmart their dates and keep their romantic relationship.
Besides this saying being used in a relationship context, you must have seen those motivational quotes that say “Look Like A Girl – Act Like Lady – Think Like a Man – Work Like A Boss” and clearly from a career point of view. Even though it’s supposed to be a motivational quote, I never really get motivated by it. As a matter of fact, it rather always leaves me confused. And hey, maybe it’s just me ‘thinking like a woman’… cause you know, I’m probably overthinking this.
So recently I decided to do a bit of research on this topic. Why should women ‘think like men’, and most importantly are there any benefits in doing so?
Women Who Think Like Men Earn More
According to an article released on Telegraph, scientists have discovered that women in the UK who think like men earn more than those with the usual female brain known as ‘Type-E brain’. This type of brain tends to be more empathetic than the male ‘Type-S brain’ which tends to be better at constructing and analysing systems. However, women who work in sectors where the empathising trait is more important such as education, social care, and customer service, do earn better wages too.
I then wonder, do these women earn more because they have taught themselves how to thrive in a certain the type of industry or because they are thinking like men?
Also, contrary to the ‘Think Like A Man’ concept. In the bestselling ‘Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office’, Dr. Lois Frankel says “success does not come from acting like a man” – How you think is in line with how you act.
“There are certain characteristics that both men and women can learn from each other in order to gain success.”
Rather, women should stop thinking and behaving like ‘nice’ girls. Women bring a unique set of behaviours and play a unique role in the workplace. So the issue here is not that women should necessarily think like men. However, there are certain characteristics that both men and women can learn from each other in order to gain success.
For example, according to Dr. Lois Frankel, women tend to make many ‘girly’ mistakes in the corporate workplace. This includes, not being direct about your needs and caring too much about what others think. Also, the inability to take risks due to self-doubt is also one of the common mistakes women tend to make way more than men.
Both sexes can learn from each other’s characteristics, without one ‘being labelled’ to have to think like the other.
Do we need the label?
In my opinion, women can learn more from observing some male characteristics. For example, how men tend to solve certain issues, land their promotion and keep their emotions a bit more in check. And adopt these ‘extra set of skills’ but still think like women. We were created to be women for a reason, why force yourself to think like something or someone you’re not?
If a man obtains certain female characteristics such as being caring and showing more empathy – which in today’s business culture are essential skills for men to have as well. Does that mean that the male is ‘thinking like a woman’? – Also, my question is, who tells a man lacking social skills “Boy, you better think more like a woman”?
In conclusion, yes both sexes can learn from each other’s characteristics and skills. However, without one ‘being labelled’ to have to think like the other. But hey, maybe this calls for a part two.
What’s your opinion on the ‘Think Like A Man’ concept? I would like to know your thoughts in the comment box below.