Friday, 28 December 2007

Interview with the Patriarchy

I had a job interview a few months ago, shortly after moving.

Within ten-minutes of the interview I was thinking to myself "I'd better apply for more jobs after this" and also "This is the sort of shit I'd post about if I still ran my blog."

It was an interview with a woman who ran her own financial investment practice. She was the boss and she had seven employees. I was applying for a job as a basic accounts clerk, the usual easy, stress-free shit us bachelors can afford to do, on account of us - by definition of being bachelors - not being legally bound to provide for a financial black-hole wife, just ourselves.

At first, this was a fifty-something career gal I started to feel some respect for. She said she'd been in the investment business since leaving University and had started her own practice twenty-years ago. Her offices were nice and fancy, her desk big and oaky, she owned and ran the business on her own - no rich hubby in the background funding it; I don't think she was married anyway, or at least she had no wedding ring on - and the receptionist was constantly answering client's telephone calls whilst I waited for my interview. She seemed to know her stuff and evidently made a lot of money for herself and her clients.

Any respect I had for her, and any hopes of getting the job, sank quickly when, shortly into the interview, she inexplicably asked me "Would you have a problem taking orders from a woman?" whilst furrowing her brow so quizically it looked like one of her eyebrows was trying to mate with the other, and both my respect and hopes plunged ever deeper when she asked me that exact same question, entirely at random, a second time just a few minutes later, to which I replied in the negative, just as I'd done the first time around.

My assurances evidently had little impact on her. I had all the qualifications and a good amount of experience required for the humble position, yet I didn't get the job. What a surprise.

What was most pathetic was that this woman clearly thought of herself as - and conducted herself as - some sort of big mean Alpha Female, taking on the might of a male dominated world. Yet here I was, just some guy young enough to be her son, acting all enthusiastic and pleasant, and she's twice asking me - almost fearfully - to confirm whether I'd be okay taking orders from a female boss. Pitifully, despite my assurances to the contrary, she still evidently thought that I was liable to metamorphose into some sort of Patriarchal flesh-ripping feral lunatic beast the first time she asks me to do something.

"No mere female tell me have figures
on her desk by morning! Me mad! Raaagh!!"

I should have guessed I wouldn't get the job. I saw six of her employees whilst I was waiting in reception, and they were all female, and it's a fair bet the seventh was female too (given that I overheard she was on maternity leave.)

I impatiently phoned up to hound the woman to find out if I was getting the job, and in addition to being told (by the receptionist) 'sorry, no', I happened to find out the sex of the successful applicant. Can you guess what sex she was? Actually, you probably can given that I gave it away in the previous sentence.

I really wish she'd have taken a chance and given me that job. It'd have been great to have taught her a lesson by living up to her horrors of the Patriarchal Menace Within (TM). I'd arrive early on my first day, sit at my desk, flick brazenly through a porn mag and then, when Alpha Female Boss arrives, tell her 'Hey love, I'm gaspin' for some tea. Milk no sugar darlin'.' Then I'd slap her arse and shove her towards the office kitchen.

Heheh! Just to be ironic.

And then sacked, no doubt. :(

Seriously though, I wouldn't have given a shit about her being a woman. I'd do the job I was contracted to do so long as she paid me the salary I was contracted to receive.

Note, incidentally, how a woman can employ solely women, but if a man employs solely men, the Equal Opportunities Commissars would be round with taser-guns.

Oh well, I've got another job since then and everything is cool now, so at least I can look back on it with amusement.


Anonymous said...

Ah, equal opportunity. For all humans are created equal. Some are just more equal than others.

Darren said...

She was obviously looking for an excuse not to employ a man. As you say, the equal opportunities people never seem to care when its the men getting the shaft.

Anonymous said...

I had a similar experience when I worked for the state public utilities commission. My small department was composed of myself, two hostile women, and two secretaries. My two female superiors were constantly searching for signs of insubordination and not taking them seriously. They even become verbally abusive on occasion and then finally tried to set me up to be fired.

I put up with it for three years until I landed a senior position in the private sector (my entire department was male). I found out later that my boss had been demoted (no longer a supervisor) and that the other analyst above me had broken her ankle and then lost her job due to an unacceptably long sick leave.

Ha Ha!

Martin said...

At my old firm the male bosses tended to promote the females. It was done on the basis they were less qualified and less experienced. They were seen as less of a threat to a male boss.

Egghead said...

Woman boss, 7 female employees? Betcha $10 she's a carpet-muncher.

On a related note, I'm confident that company will be out of business within a year.

Anonymous said...

The boss is probably hated by the female employees and quite possibly gay, bi or even a closet sadist.

Female employees HATE working with and for other females and love having a young carefree, unattached male around to flirt/joke with and pass the hours.

Quite simply, the boss feared a male employee would have thrown a monkey wrench in her status quo in the chain of command and control over her employees.

You (in her mind) would have become a loyalty and attention distraction to your co-workers and discipline threat in competition with her Alpha domination role over her female employees. A "boat rocker" if you will.

This is nothing new and male bosses have avoided adding nubile females to all male workplaces for many of the same reasons, only difference is the female applicants can get a lawyer and sue for sex discrimination.

Anonymous said...

"Female employees HATE working with and for other females and love having a young carefree, unattached male around to flirt/joke with and pass the hours."

Studies of workplace behavior have found that most female workers prefer to have a male boss as, even in this age of feminism, women still see us as the authority figures.

Female workers tend to think female bosses are bitchy and conflict often ensues. So much for the feminist notion that there would be no conflict if women were in charge - the opposite is true.

Anonymous said...

Nothing to add of my own, but just to
say that anon 08.13's comments are very perceptive, and they agree with my limited experience of working in an office.

Duncan - A suggestion which you've probably heard before. Get a skill/trade and try to make yourself as independent as you can. (Journalism - and the mainstream?)

Keep up the blog for as long as you can though!


deceptacon said...

The chick did you a favor. Taking orders from females is the easy part since they throw out so many of them you can't miss them. The problem is trying to figure out what the actual order really means. There is a process of decoding that is required. On top of that is the overwhelming majority of orders that are irrational or contridicting.

For example they will tell you not to talk to a certian group of people until it comes back and bites them in the ass for laying down such a rule. Then it's why didn't you talk to that person? Duh, because you told me not to. Wrong answer, it was still my fault. I should have just known. Geez.

Take it from me as one who works for one of these career broads. Stay away from them if you can.

Devlin said...

If you are a manly man trying to get an office job these days you may be in for the long haul. The system is rigged in favor of women from the top down. As well as the "equal" opportunities discrimination they get special treatment with government and corporate patronage, startup funding and so on. Of course due to the intrinsic laziness and uselessness of women, men must still be employed in most genuinely productive and mission-critical jobs, but unfortunately in modern Western economies such jobs are few and far between.

Regarding the comment about the female interviewer being a dyke, this is not necessarily the case. She is probably just an evil, manhating psychopath like essentially all Western women. Regarding the comment about women preferring male bosses, yes, women love pussified near-men they can blow for promotion and who are too lame to stand up to their crap.

Stephen said...

I only recently discovered that feminism is a fraud and that there was a men's movement. But now that I know, I just want to say: "What a relief." For years I asked myself "what do women want?" Now I confidently answer: "Who cares."

Women are so monumentally overrated. On some of the MRM blogs I frequent, I notice that many of the feminists attack the men with remarks such as "no wonder you don't have a girlfriend." That is about the most arrogant behavior I can think of. They act like a man's ultimate achievement is getting a woman. Wrong. A woman's ultimate achievement is getting me because I'm quite a catch.

I worked for one of those "career broads" and most of the time I was in her presence I almost wanted to grab my nuts for safety reasons. Though I didn't fear this woman, or anyone else for that matter, I found it interesting that she seemed so masculine even though she was very feminine. Given the chance, I prefer a male boss any day over a female bundle of contradictions.

Uncharted Thoughts said...

Man that would have been a terrible place to work.
At my office I'm only in there for an hour in the morning, then I'm off to meet with clients outside.

In that one hour I hear a non stop stream of back stabbing gossip and cat fights. The office is women mostly, all they do is fight and conspire against each other.

Be glad.

Stephen said...

I have some great sites for you guys. Be sure to read this stuff. It will do you a lot more good than harm:

Hmh said...

I'm just glad that I've never worked in an environment like that.

Anonymous said...

"Would you have any problems with taking orders from a woman?"

"I would have no problem taking orders from a woman who didn't feel it necessary to ask that question, let alone twice in one interview."

Anonymous said...

"Would you have any problems with taking orders from a woman?"

"I would have no problem taking orders from a woman who didn't feel it necessary to ask that question, let alone twice in one interview."