Who's the Better Boss?

   By drodriguez  Aug 04, 2009

If you had a choice between having a female boss or a male boss, which would you choose?  And would the choice really matter?  A recent article from the New York Times talks to the experts about whether women make better bosses than men in the business world.  What they found out is very interesting. 

Alice Eagley, chairman of social psychology at Northwest University, has done extensive research on managerial behavior.  What Eagley has found out through studies and research is that women bosses are less "bossy" and tend to use a more collaborative and democratic method. Eagley also said, "compared with men, women use a more positive approach by encouraging and urging others rather than a negative approach of scolding and reprimanding them."

Author of How Remarkable Women Lead, Joanna Barsh, reports that women in places of authority can often excel because they tend to look for more meaning in their work than men.  Barsh said that men often go for higher salary and status.  She believes however, that women do need to stop multitasking as they often do, "When you attempt to facilitate a phone conference while doing email, your brain switches between tasks, and you lose focus and energy." 

Women may also have a leg up on their male counterparts because they are good "mind readers".  According to columnist and psychologist, Susan Pinker, women produce more of a hormone called oxytocin that has been proven to make them read people’s expressions and process emotions quicker than men.  After men were given doses ofoxytocin (squirted up their nostrils) they were found to have these "mind reading" skills as well.

What do you think of some of the differences between male and female bosses?

Have you noticed any differences in your work place?

Make a Comment

msphiiia by msphiiia | san francisco, CA
Sep 03, 2009

I think the different with a male and female boss is that when it comes to a male boss, usually we listen to what they ask for, while as for the female bosses, some can take advantage that they don't say anything and keep going about our business without taking on their requests or tasks.

cenmad by cenmad | South Riding, VA
Sep 01, 2009

I've worked for both men and women, and had great female and male bosses -- and pretty horrible ones, too. I think it has far less to do with gender than with being comfortable with authority and responsibility. The bosses who felt threatened or like they had something to prove have been uniformly awful, while those who were confident and self-assured cultivated teamwork and brought the best out of their teams.

LaneyB by LaneyB | Brick, NJ
Aug 31, 2009

I have worked for both men and women and in this current work environment women are better. Many times you the the good old boys club and they are not all welcoming to the female. As a woman boss, I have 3 men as direct reports and only get good feedback.

robynlong by robynlong | meadville, PA
Aug 30, 2009

I have always like male bosses better myself. All of the women bosses I have had were to emotional and changed their minds to much!

caseycolette by caseycolette | TRUSSVILLE, AL
Aug 27, 2009

i think women bosses are tougher on female employees than the men are actually. and try too hard not to be sensitive to a womans needs and it creates a slight problem sometimes. not in all cases, but ive seen it.

krystlnickel by krystlnickel | SAINT STEPHEN, SC
Aug 26, 2009

I do believe that women are the better bosses not only because we are more organized but because of the fact that we do give praises where it is do instead of only focusing on the bad things. I also just recently saw on the tv show The Doctors that woman have more of the sensors that are capable of multi tasking than men do. So yes it makes more sense that women are better at being bosses than men.

junconventional by junconventional | RICHMOND, VA
Aug 26, 2009

Maybe I'm in the minority most of the women bosses I've had were prescription crazy. I've had two that were caring/reasonable/collaborative - I've had a scattering of male bosses and one exceptional male supervisor that mentored me - changed my whole point of view in my working relationships.

tsoko22 by tsoko22 | GREENFILD TWP, PA
Aug 26, 2009

I would like to say that a woman boss is more caring and resonable but in my case it is the exact opposite. I am a teacher and we were in the hunt for a new superintendent. We all thought that a women would be a good choice. We were wrong. She is nasty, spiteful, so uncaring and such a micromanager that she is single handedly ruining our district. We used to be a great district to work for:0(

andies by andies | stockbridge, GA
Aug 25, 2009

I think like one person stated above, you're going to be more comfortable with a boss that has similar views to your own whether they're male or female.

aharring by aharring | Apache Junction, AZ
Aug 22, 2009

I think that most women are more organized, but it all depends on the person who would be a better boss.

veelove23 by veelove23 | greenville, AL
Aug 20, 2009

I think that this a questions that no more could answer becasue God didn't put the woman over the man he put the man over the woman in some cases womens have a good insight on things better then mens do.

peanut1 by peanut1 | syracuse, NY
Aug 19, 2009

i think that men are better bosses every woman that i have work for brought there personal issues to work and were ver unprofessional.

Lindaman22 by Lindaman22 | Woodbury, NY
Aug 18, 2009

I think this question is not a matter of gender. I've have great male and great female bosses. I can also say the opposite. A good boss is an intelligent, understanding, inspirational , motivating, organized, helpful mentor - male or female.

JMaynard85 by JMaynard85 | Wilmington, MA
Aug 18, 2009

My boss I have currently is Male.. he is awesome! He gets everything done in a timely manner and really goes out of his way to make sure that every individual under him is working sucessfully.. however I can say quite the opposite for my previous boss who was a female.. I feel like woman nit pick a bit more than guys will.. they worry about all the small details!

lazyriver by lazyriver | South Bend, IN
Aug 17, 2009

In my house it is just me and my husband (kids grown and away from home). And together we deceide on the issues. So together we rule the house.