Women in the workplace

I just read a couple of articles about women in the workplace and how women use hard work and dedication and also their physical appearance and flirting to get ahead.  I have not been working for too long, so my experience does not make me an expert on this.  Most of my experience with women in the workplace comes from movies.  What came to my mind after reading these articles were 3 movies: Charlie Wilson’s War, Legally Blonde, and Erin Brockovich.  In both Legally Blonde and Erin Brockovich the main characters were beautiful women who were not taken serious because of their physical appearance and their flirtatious behavior, and they had to work twice as hard to prove themselves.  The other movie Charlie Wilson’s War, is a about a Texas Congressman, Charlie Wilson, and his involvement in the Afghan and Soviet war in the 1980s.  I bring up this movie because his staff was full of beautiful and busty women that were energetic and extremely flirtatious.  He used the women to flirt and influence his constituents and liven up his office.  The women were never shown to be very smart, and they were never taken seriously.  Charlie Wilson’s staff is how I envision the 1980s beautiful woman workforce.

In the first article I read, “In Today’s Workplace, Women Feel More Free to Be Women,” Ellen Joan Pollock wrote in the Wall Street Journal about how women are able to use their femininity to get ahead.  There were a lot of interviews with women who admitted to flirting and dressing provocatively to get ahead.  Many of the women interviewed said they flirted to get the job and/or that initial promotion, but all the while they were getting valuable work experience that they were then able to use to go further instead of using their femininity.

The second article I read was written in the USA Today by Del Jones entitled “Study says flirtatious women get fewer raises, promotions.”  This article was referenced to the Tulane study.  The Tulane study asked 164 female MBA grads questions if they ever used flirting or provocative clothing to get a promotion or a raise.  In this study, 49% of the women used flirtatious acts and revealing clothing.  According to the study those 49% made less money and they were promoted less often.

Both of these articles were very entertaining.  In my industry, the casino industry, women and men make a decent living using their sexuality, but it can only get you so far.  To get far in the casino industry involves a lot of hard work and having the ability to build and keep relationships with your players.  In the gaming industry there is a sense of entitlement by the players so the managers have to be respected and have power.  There is a balance of power between big players and managers and if the managers do not have enough, big players can walk all over you or they may just leave and never come back because the casino and staff becomes inferior to these big players and he/she cannot take them seriously.  What it really comes down to in the casino industry is how much respect the manager has with his/her employees and players.  I definitely know women can do the job, but I do not think a woman can do it if she is hugging, kissing, and flirting with her employees and players.  They might enjoy it, but it my opinion it gives the wrong impression to both the players and employees, and that goes for males and females.

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