Coronapandemien kan blive positiv for kvinders ligestilling i mødelokalerne

Opmærksomhed på mødekulturen kan betyde, at kvinder respekteres for det, de har imellem ørerne.

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The corona pandemic could be positive for women’s equality in the meeting rooms

Attention to the meeting culture can mean that women are respected for what they have between their ears.

The other day, a Facebook friend wrote that she liked attending meetings virtually better than in a physical meeting room. Why? She wrote: “Video conferencing has leveled the playing field for women in management positions. Literally people see me from the neck up and can not judge me on my clothes, my shoes or anything else. And they don’t talk easily about me either, it’s great. “

Her post made me think about whether Zoom meetings might promote equality. However, after a quick google search, it became clear that there are several research results on the subject, which paint an opposite picture than what my Facebook friend expressed. Several media outlets have covered the topic and among other things, The New York Times has reported on the topic here : 

But whether Zoomm meetings of women are experienced as liberating, as is the case with the aforementioned Facebook friend or vice versa as inhibiting, I imagine that there is more focus on the issue than there was before the pandemic – simply because it has become so much clearer , what happens when men tumble women.

Many outside covers are gone in relation to our attention when we sit in an online meeting. On a Zoom call, I can not physically feel the presence of my colleagues in the same way that I can when we are sitting in a meeting room in the workplace. I am not distracted by what he or she is doing or by sounds or smells. I look at my screen and have to relate to which of the little squares is talking and what they are saying.

Let it be said at once: there are an incredible number of terrible consequences of the corona pandemic . But nothing is so bad that it is not good for anything.

I live in the state of Washington in the United States. We crossed the 365-day marker a few days ago that the children have been receiving homeschooling for a year. My husband and those of our neighbors who have the opportunity to do so have also been working from home for more than a year.

All meetings take place via Zoom and the interaction that does not take place via the computer screen takes place over the phone. Meeting rooms, company lunches, informal meetings in the hallways are gone.

So when research and media focus on the role of women and the opportunity to make an impact at Zoom meetings and on how men treat their female colleagues at these meetings, one can hope that the increased focus will spread to the implementation of new agendas. , when the world once again opens up.

And here it becomes interesting, at least if one is in favor of equality. Imagine that when the world re-establishes the routines we left more than a year ago that we are actually using the knowledge we have to change behavior. I already have a hard time understanding why some men act the way they do when they find it completely out of place to interrupt and intimidate women in a meeting room – and everywhere else for that matter.

I allow myself to dream that new research, when we have been back at our workplaces for a year, shows that women in the meeting rooms express that there is a different mood and responsiveness when they attend meetings. That they are less aware of their gender and that there is more attention from their male colleagues to their professionalism. If so, we have managed to make the world a little bit better.

Let us hope that the culmination of the experiences we have gained in relation to women’s relationships in the meeting room affects the gaze and the treatment that women have previously been accustomed to at Zoom meetings and in a physical meeting room.

I hope the women return to the meeting rooms and not to the same extent as before the pandemic to fight for the floor. Research has repeatedly shown that in meetings where both women and men are represented at the same seniority level, it is the men who dominate. Not because women have nothing on their minds, simply because men with their deeper tone trump their sentences through, talk for longer than women, interrupt more than women do, and generally sweep women off the field.

Imagine if men only related to what came out of the mouths of their female colleagues and not to the rest of their bodies. And yes, there must be room for flirtation in life, but not in a situation where it is undesirable and one wants to be taken seriously in his professionalism and not be made an object in an atmosphere where business and desire are intertwined.

(Google translate)

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