Glamour, July 26th 2022: How does mansplaining manifest in the workplace?
What actually is mansplaining? And how prevalent is it in the workplace? GLAMOUR spoke to Victoria McLean, founder & CEO of award-winning career consultancy City CV, to find out more…
Below is a short excerpt.
What is mansplaining?
Victoria defines mansplaining as “when a man explains something – especially to a woman – in a patronising, condescending, or overly simplified way.” She adds, “It could also be when a man explains something that the woman he’s talking to already knows about, has experience in, or is even an expert in; in any case, he has less knowledge than she does.”
“I’ve even heard about instances of men explaining things like periods to women. It may also be that the man explains the topic inaccurately, and with a tendency to be overconfident, or not listen to the woman he’s talking to.”
How does mansplaining manifest in the workplace?
According to Victoria, “Mansplaining can have a really negative impact in the workplace” as it makes women feel “under-appreciated because it assumes that they don’t have the knowledge, skills, and experience that the man has.”
She adds that, “Continued mansplaining aggravates these feelings, leading to decreased motivation, less of a feeling of belonging, and a real sense of frustration. It also reaffirms gender stereotypes, as it implies that women are less intelligent, less well-educated and less able to do their job than men are. And while you may think mansplaining is just downright annoying (which of course it is), it could actually be hampering your career, especially if the mansplainer is a leader in your organisation.
“Studies show that men interrupt conversations and correct people a lot more than women do – making it more difficult for women to get their point across, hampering progress. And if a woman decides to engage in this behaviour herself, she’s often seen as abrasive or aggressive.”