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The real reason why women are less assertive at work: it's a sexual strategy

Everywhere you turn these days reading about female empowerment or career strategies, you read the same things:

  • Women need to negotiate more aggressively
  • Women need to be more confident
  • Women need to speak up more
  • ....

And yeah, maybe they are right.
What they are failing to understand though is that it's not that women are stupid.

The reason why women are more demure at work, and the reason why research clearly shows women are even more demure when men around, is that women are unconsciously following an effective social and sexual strategy.

The reason is simple: more submissive and feminine women are, on average, more successful at dating.

And that's why women, especially in mixed groups, are less assertive.

A video from Sex and the City explains this best:

This is also why women catch up to men in self-confidence as they grow older.
It's because, as they approach menopause, they give less of a fuck about being liked by men:

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

I absolutely agree with you. Very useful and correct thoughts

Lucio Buffalmano has reacted to this post.
Lucio Buffalmano

Thanks. News to me and this is helpful.

Yeah, and then there is the fact that women don't need personal success as much as men do.

Men earn more because success and income more highly correlates with their sexual market value.
Women's sexual market value will not change as much with changes in their income, salaries, and titles. Hergo, they didn't develop as much of a "hunger" and drive to go after personal success.

In short: men earn more they need to earn more.
That's another element that you will never hear from the "wage gap" crowd.

Have you read the forum guidelines for effective communication already?

Hi Lucio,

Your notes on submissive behavior at work were very sharp and insightful, I hadn't realized that women could follow a sexual strategy unconsciously.  To add to your point, I learned of a slightly opposing idea that left out the SMV aspect you explained:

On the topic of women needing to negotiate more aggressively, Linda Babcock, a female world expert in negotiating, makes the point that

Currently, she teaches women to prepare for a negotiation by thinking about from getting 39% of the pie (when they didn't think about those things), to getting 55% of the pie when they did.

While she never directly addresses the social and sexual strategy concept, it seems that she's teaching women to undo their unconscious behaviors by changing their thought patterns. Now that I know submissiveness is a social and sexual strategy for women at work, I can't help but feel like Babcock's research is a bit incomplete but I'm glad I could share her findings here.