The Language of Leadership - Voices 2015

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The Language of Leadership
Caroline Simard, Research Director at Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University

Voices 2015 www.globaltechwomen.com


Session Length: 1 Hour

Language can influence our perceptions of men and women, and the potential each has to lead. In this session, we discuss the language of leadership and the role bias can play in shaping different leadership outcomes for men and women. The session will offer strategies for individuals and managers to examine and sharpen their own voices and their advocacy of others, with an aim to advance women’s leadership and create effective organizations where all employees thrive.

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  • Technology is not alone
  • These beliefs are influenced by our socialization
  • White
    Male
    Anti-social
    Low EQ
    “Brutally honest”
    Young
    Obsessive
  • No blame, high responsibility message.
    We didn’t create these social biases. We are not the cause but we all can be agents of change.
  • IN the 70s and 80s major orchestras in the country made a change. Women only made up 5% of all musicians. They were concerned that bias may be creeping into the evaluation process. What they decided to do is to introduce a screen in the audition.
  • The screen increased the probability of women making it past the first round by a full 50%. A small change but a very significant increase. Today 25% of musicians are women. The screen was a major contributing factor. This study illustrates two main points.
  • Ellen – How does this think to the point about setting your standards very clear at the beginning?
  • Clarify bias versus stereotypes. People aren’t as clear about how stereotypes relate to bias and how we act.
  • Gender stereotypes also affect the criteria we use to evaluate men and women. This study is done in the context of hiring for a police chief. As you know police chief is a very male-type job. In this study there were two different resumes. One had more education, and the other one had more on the ground experience.

    In the first set of the experiment, participants were asked to evaluate these resumes with no names on the front and ask to say who they would hire and why. What they found is that the participants overwhelmingly preferred the candidate that had more education. And they justified their choice by saying – this person has more education and I think that is more important.
  • In the second phase of the study, they have the same resumes but now they put men and women’s names on them. The one with more education is a man, the one with more experience is the woman. People overwhelmingly preferred the male candidate, and when asked said that it was because he had more education. No problem there – education was what had been found to be the most important criteria before.
  • But, when the condition was flipped and the male candidate had more experience and the female candidate had more education, people overwhelmingly picked the male candidate. If education matters, Karen should have been chosen. But Brian was chosen – and when asked why they picked him they said because he has more experience. So the criteria for hiring shifted to justify their gut feeling that Brian would be a better pick for the police chief position because he confirmed their stereotypical assumptions about police chiefs being men.


    REALLY RESONATES.
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture

    Tie back to the stereotypes of programmer.
  • Language is a cue about who belongs in the culture
  • This has been shown to lead to shifting criteria.
    Reintroduce power of introductions – ties back to ponsorship is so important.

    Communal vs agentic women, Communal vs. agentic men
    Social skills predict hiring more than competence for agentic women.
    For all other applicants, competence is more important than social skill.
    (Phelan, Moss-Racusin, and Rudman, 2005)
  • Both women and men might fear that people won't like them if they are self-promoting, but women are more likely to let it stop them. In one study by Moss-Racusin, published last year in Psychology of Women Quarterly, 192 college students answered questions such as "What are some of your best qualities or strengths?" and "Overall, why should someone hire you as opposed to another candidate?" Then the participants imagined a group of people watching a video of their interview, and answered such questions as, "Would you worry that people thought you were too confident?" and "Would you worry about being called vain?” Moss-Racusin found that while women and men both worried about backlash, this fear inhibited women's but not men's abilities to promote themselves.
  • The first says – she works with me.

    The second is powerful – establishes her credibility as a technical and business expert.
  • Clarify bias versus stereotypes. People aren’t as clear about how stereotypes relate to bias and how we act.
  • The Language of Leadership - Voices 2015

    1. 1. The Language of Leadership Caroline Simard, PhD Research Director
    2. 2. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Underrepresentation of women in leadership •  Approximately 4.5% of the Fortune 500 CEOs are women. •  Women hold 14% of executive officer positions. •  Women hold 18% of elected congressional offices. •  Women hold 17.2% of research university presidencies. •  Women of color are more underrepresented. Correll, 2014.
    3. 3. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Bias: Cognitive Function
    4. 4. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Bias is an error in decision making.
    5. 5. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Stereotypes are the content of bias Stereotypes are generalized beliefs about a particular group or class of people.
    6. 6. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Stereotypes function as “cognitive shortcuts.”
    7. 7. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. What are some of the stereotypes about technologists?
    8. 8. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. How do we block bias?
    9. 9. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. “Recognize that we didn’t create this, but we can fix it.” Megan Smith CTO, United States of America
    10. 10. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. We can debug processes and block bias.
    11. 11. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. (Correll 2014; Goldin and Rouse, 2000)
    12. 12. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. (Correll 2014; Goldin and Rouse, 2000)
    13. 13. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Stereotypes affect the standard we use to evaluate the performance of individuals.
    14. 14. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. 79% 49% Brian Miller Karen Miller Correll, 2013; Steinpreis, Anders & Ritzke 1999.
    15. 15. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Extra Scrutiny “I would need to see evidence that she had gotten these grants and publications on her own.” “It would be impossible to make such a judgment without teaching evaluations.” Correll, 2013; Steinpreis, Anders & Ritzke 1999.
    16. 16. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Stereotypes affect the criteria we use to evaluate the performance of individuals.
    17. 17. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. More education Uhlmann & Cohen 2005 More experience ✔ © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved.
    18. 18. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. More education More experience ✔ © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Uhlmann & Cohen 2005
    19. 19. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. More experience More education ✔ © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Uhlmann & Cohen 2005
    20. 20. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. How do you see the unseen?
    21. 21. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. The most common way that we transmit and maintain culture is through language.
    22. 22. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Language of Competence Team player Friendly Good relationship manager Committed Big thinker Influences others Takes risks Independent Description A Description B COMMUNAL AGENTIC
    23. 23. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Language of Competence c Communal Language Agentic Language
    24. 24. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Communal Agentic Supportive Team Player Helpful Friendly Thoughtful Collaborative Committed Caring Tactical Hardworking Relationship builder Confident Strategic Ambitious Outspoken Independent Risk-taker Entrepreneurial Driver Influential Go-getter Innovator
    25. 25. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. And finally, a special thank you to Lori. You won't be surprised to know that she threw herself into this project with tireless dedication, good spirits and the gentle touch that is needed to coordinate so many big personalities.
    26. 26. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. And finally, a special thank you to Lori. You won't be surprised to know that she threw herself into this project with tireless dedication, good spirits and the gentle touch that is needed to coordinate so many big personalities.
    27. 27. Advocacy and Sponsorship to create conditions for performance Power of Introductions
    28. 28. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Rudman 1998 More Competent More Competent Less likeable ✔
    29. 29. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Women who are seen as competent suffer a likability penalty. A woman who is successful in a stereotypically male job is seen as less likable, less attractive, less happy, and less socially desirable. Successful female managers are seen as more deceitful, pushy, selfish, and abrasive than successful male managers. The Double Bind Yoder and Schleicher, 1996; Heilman, et al, 2004
    30. 30. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Advocacy and Sponsorship “No one leans in more than the Clayman Institute. I have had the privilege and honor of working with Shelley and Lori. I believe strongly in leadership. I’ve never met better leaders. They believe in gender equality. They understand how you take academic research and make it apply. And they will stop at nothing to change this world. And it is an honor and a privilege to be able to partner with you.” Sheryl Sandberg
    31. 31. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Evaluation of Technical Competence in Interviews “Yeah, she can code, but she can’t convince me about her decisions.” “She asked a lot of questions. I can’t spend all my time babysitting her.”
    32. 32. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Separate style from the evaluation of technical competence.
    33. 33. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Language of Technical Competence Toolkit 1.  Separate Style from Technical Competence Technical Competence Cultural Fit & Style Coding ability Style: Ability to Convince
    34. 34. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Notice when higher or different standards are used to evaluate the performance of certain individuals.
    35. 35. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Language of Technical Competence Toolkit 1.  Separate Style from Technical Competence 2.  Notice Higher or Different Standards and Insist on Universal Application of Standards Technical Competence Cultural Fit & Style Coding ability Style: Ability to Convince Use this criteria for all candidates
    36. 36. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. “Super Positive/Can Do attitude. People enjoy working with (person).” “(Person) has created a forum which enables greater visibility and collaboration across the many complex initiatives in flight.”
    37. 37. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. “Super Positive/Can Do attitude. People enjoy working with (her).” “(He) has created a forum which enables greater visibility and collaboration across the many complex initiatives in flight.”
    38. 38. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Separate personality from feedback and focus on accomplishments.
    39. 39. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Language of Technical Competence Toolkit 1.  Separate Style from Technical Competence 2.  Notice Higher or Different Standards and Insist on Universal Application of Standards 3.  Separate Personality from Feedback and Focus on Accomplishments
    40. 40. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Criticism of Personality “You can come across as abrasive sometimes. I know you don’t mean to, but you need to pay attention to your tone.” (Fortune 2014) © Lori Mackenzie 2015. All rights reserved.
    41. 41. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Critical Feedback (Personality/Style) (Fortune, 2014)
    42. 42. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Activity Write an introduction/advocacy statement for a woman or for yourself. •  Pay attention to the language of competence and technical competence. •  Focus on accomplishments and expertise.
    43. 43. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. Action for tomorrow Toolkit 1.  Write an introduction statement for yourself using balanced language 2.  Advocate on other women’s behalf using the language of leadership 3.  Block Undue Criticism of Women’s Personality 4.  Establish Clear Criteria in evaluating talent
    44. 44. © Stanford University 2014. All rights reserved. What’s Next?

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