But don’t many women agree with Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella?
Whenever a member of a disenfranchised, underrepresented or marginalized group calls out the privileged, empowered majority on how status quo suppresses, undermines and contributes to their oppression, you will often get one of several types of feedback from at least one member of said privileged class.
1. You all whine/complain too much. You always play the victim.
2. This is political correctness run amok. People should be able to say what they feel without needing to assuage the feelings of the hypersensitive, perpetually offended class of people.
3. There is no oppression. Everything is a meritocracy. Only the talented, capable and qualified are winning solely based on merit alone.
The responses to 1 to 3 are predictable, lazy replies from beneficiaries of unearned benefits who refuse to acknowledge that superficial things such as class, race, and being a member of the establishment help them advance; and that the cards are stacked in their favor. They are also aloof to the fact that language, policies and practices benefit them to the exclusion of minority groups and those not entrenched or part of status quo,
[e.g. Old boys’ club, business as usual, how it’s always been]
They have little understanding and empathy towards those who are on the outside looking in or underneath that glass ceiling.
Recently, after returning from a much-needed vacation, I got back into catching up on pop culture, policy and politics chatter. I bounced into the ongoing discussion over Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella‘s controversial statements made during a women conference. The newly appointed Nadella had to back peddle from his incendiary comments this weekend saying “it’s good karma” for women to patiently wait until the “system” rewards them with raises rather than pipe up and demand one.
Those who fall back on this intellectually de minimis retort or think it is political correctness to have to back track really ought to ask themselves if they think men too ought to wait patiently to be recognized.
But too often, many women too prescribe to the type of thinking that says we should wait.
A few years ago, my good friend and I who launched our own online radio show was told by a mutual female friend that we were too boastful of our accomplishments. She found that we were too quick to sing our own praises.
Back then too, I thought that our mutual friend was among the type of women the statistics talk about.
You know the ones who would not apply for a job if they didn’t meet 100% of the qualifications while men would, even if they met 60% of what was required.
She was part of the gals who do not feel confident demanding higher salaries even though they deserve it.
She was one of the women Sheryl Sandberg was talking about when she advised women in corporate settings to “lean in” and take a seat at the main conference room table rather than the chairs that lined the periphery in the back.
Too many of us in corporate job settings are indeed waiting patiently to get recognized for our value and worth and to be rewarded, and think that’s the right way to do it.
So while we are lambasting a man for articulating a common corporate culture understanding and practice, we need to also be reminding women that too many of them [us] do, in fact, subconsciously or purposefully subscribe to the same thinking….and they [we] need to break out of that constricting mentality.