HCA 615 If you are a female, is there a need to act differently when you manage these relationships in an all-male leadership group?

HCA 615 If you are a female, is there a need to act differently when you manage these relationships in an all-male leadership group?

HCA 615 If you are a female, is there a need to act differently when you manage these relationships in an all-male leadership group?


Respond to the following four discussion questions based on the Case Example on pages 124-125 in Essentials of Management and Leadership in Public Health:

  1. If you are a female, is there a need to act differently when you manage these relationships in an all-male leadership group? Explain your reasoning. 
  2. If you are a male, is there a reason for a woman to act differently if she is managing a relationship with you? Explain your reasoning.
  3. Does the fact that Dr. Gerberding expressed her own experience with discrimination make it more or less likely that she did not manage her relationship with the all-male management team well? Explain your reasoning.

Finally, what would be an effective communication plan at this point to address the discontent among the employees?

Re: Module 2 DQ 1

Good morning professor and class

  1. As a female in this example they should definitely manage the relationships in an all male group because the women ar elooked upon as not as smart as men. In most health care fields men are in the majority and are generally looked upon as the more stronger, smarter sex. We know that to not be true as recently women are making a resurgence in all facets of health care becoming nurses, doctors, lawyers, even president in some countries. If a woman is in charge and they are the only female in the group among males women should be careful not to step on any toes because already the men are looking down on her as why does she have this position and what did she do to get it. 
  2. As a male I dont think a woman should act differently if managing me because it should not matter what sex you are but as long as you can do the job respectfully and with utter confidence there should be no issue. It depends on who the man is and if they are secure in not havinbg an isue with a female supervisor. Some men may try and take advantage of and play games with their female supervisor if they want to get them in trouble and get them out of the job so a guy can get the same job.
  3. I feel Dr Gerbering telling her experience of discrimination and how she overcame it made it more likely she did not manage the male management team well. What I mean is that she didn’t take into consideration how men would take it such drastic moves during a time when all was going well and no calamity was taking place that was on a global scale. Dr Gerbering should have followed the poll she took and realized that it was not going to be a popular move among staff and when you have staff not fully in on working hard the business and work ethic will suffer. The biggest losers are the people in the surrounding communities who relied on the job/business to keep them safe and to provide a positive outlook.
  4. To address the concerns of the remaining staff who didn’t resign Dr Gerbering should have a meeting and make it an open forum. In that forum all employees who have somethign to say whether negative or positive should be free to speak without any repricussions. Dr Gering should also have experts/pundits that agree with her moves to shrink the departments and have them try and sway the crowd to her way of thinking. You may not get all the staff to believe in the process but if you get a majority that is always a good starting point. 

“Similarly, most stereotypes would have us believe that female leaders excel at “nurturing” competencies such as developing others and building relationships, and many might put exhibiting integrity and engaging in self-development in that category as well. And in all four cases our data concurred — women did score higher than men.

But the women’s advantages were not at all confined to traditionally women’s strengths. In fact at every level, more women were rated by their peers, their bosses, their direct reports, and their other associates as better overall leaders than their male counterparts — and the higher the level, the wider that gap grows (see chart; click on the image to view a larger chart):

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Specifically, at all levels, women are rated higher in fully 12 of the 16 competencies that go into outstanding leadership. And two of the traits where women outscored men to the highest degree — taking initiative and driving for results — have long been thought of as particularly male strengths. As it happened, men outscored women significantly on only one management competence in this survey — the ability to develop a strategic perspective (see chart; click on the image to view a larger chart).” (Zenger, Folkman, et al 2012)

Zenger, Jack; Folkman, Joseph (2012, 15 Mar) Are Women Better Leaders than Men? Retrieved from https://hbr.org/2012/03/a-study-in-leadership-women-do 

More women are earning college degrees and entering the workforce, yet woman only make up 4% of the CEO’s in fortune 500 companies, and  17% of Congress (Simon, 2016). 

Despite these statistics, a leader wether male or female, should always stay true to themselves regardless of who they lead. It should not matter if you are leading all men, woman, Caucasians or African Americans.  However, adjusting your communication style to meet people where they are at should always be a part of a leader’s toolbox.  It is important that a leader is cognizant of their teams’ cultural beliefs, and the world views that drive their behaviors. Understanding these things about their team allows the leader the ability to connect with her team in a way that drives engagement and organizational performance.  Therefore, a good leader is constantly adjusting their communication approach.  This is not to say they are changing who they are at their core.  It is to say they understand the idiosyncrasies of their team and the best way to work with them.  If a woman has an all-male leadership team, like any other team she should learn what matters to the team and to the individuals that make up the team. A senior management team will have different goals, and the leader will never meet each team members expectations, but they can create a shared vision (Burke & Freidman, 2011).  In the case example the two male directors that left, did so because they felt the focus of the organization was moving away from scientific inquiry (Burke & Freidman, 2011).  The question becomes was this due to an inherent bias that women are not as adept in science, feeding into Dr. Gerberding’s experience or was it because they felt the reorganization would take precedent over research.

Dr. Gerberding’s experience in the past may have influenced how she led.  She may have felt that she needed to prove herself as a leader and a female scientist. Especially with a team of all-male leaders reporting to her.  However, as the leader I would put the onus on her to understand those biases in herself and come to the table with a clear vision for her team. As the leader she needs to model the behaviors she expects from her team. If she came in making sweeping changes with out buy in from her team or creating a clear vision the team will come to their own conclusions as to what those changes could mean.

If I were in Dr. Gerberding’s position, I would regroup before rolling out the reorganization. It appears her team does not feel it aligns with their mission, they are worried about their jobs, and they simply don’t understand the need for the change.  Per the survey the employees took, she has not done a good job of getting buy-in for the reorganization. It would serve her well to assess her team, from senior leaders to front line staff. She should spend some time listening to their concerns. This could be done via town halls with individual teams or departments.  She needs a better feel for her current culture before she makes big changes. And she needs to include them in the change.

Burke, R. E., & Friedman, L. H. (2011). Essentials of Management and Leadership in Public Health. Retrieved from http://gcumedia.com/digital-resources/jonesandbartlett/2011/essentials-of-management-and-leadership-in-public-health_ebook_1e.php

Simon, C. (2016). Men still dominate the top; adjusting everyday norms could prompt change, analysts say. The Harvard Gazette. Retrieved from https://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2016/03/the-costs-of-inequality-for-women-progress-until-they-get-near-power/

Re: Module 2 DQ 1

Managing relationships when it comes to public health should be no different than managing relationships in any other organizational setting, one would think. That being said, managing relationships among the highly diverse group of public health professionals requires a complicated journey (Burke & Friedman, 2011). As one can see by the case study, many public health officials are seen as “difficult” due to their seeking of perfection from those that lead them. They want to see someone in a power position that posses a great deal of intelligence and professionalism. Each relationship in the public health sector requires its own specific type of communication and monitoring in order to keep public health and better health care messages clear and concise for community understanding as well as consistency of messages through and within the organization. For instance, managing relationships in a senior management team may require a different technique as say managing relationships within a group such as front line employees. While in many cases, both of these groups share a common goal, their ideals and experiences vary from one another, making it difficult to manage them the same way. A senior management team is normally made up of individuals with great differences. Unfortunately, no matter how much we try, we will never be able to make every person happy with every decision that is made. When it comes to managing relationships within a group such as this, it is important to maintain the involvement of the team members, keeping them active in the process. It is important for the senior management team to feel as though they are supported as well as respected (Burke & Friedman, 2011). A group like front line employees on the other hand may require a different approach than senior management members. The front line workers are just that. They are on the front lines of the organization and it is important to remember that without them, the necessary daily operations of the organization would not get completed. They are an asset to an organization’s mission as well. When a leader is attempting to manage the relationships of these people, it is important to remember that time and appreciation is quite important. For instance, it is important for leaders to truly understand what the front line employees actually accomplish on a day to day basis. It is important to be sympathetic to the challenges that they come to deal with and truly understand what they do (Burke & Friedman,

As a male or a female, when it comes to dealing with an all-male leadership group, I do think that there may be a slight difference in the way that I would choose to manage those relationships. While we would all like to believe that all men and women are created equal and that women serve in the same career fields as men all the time, this isn’t always the truth. Even if it was, there will always be individuals that see the world in one light while others see it in another. Unfortunately, there may never be a way of changing that. While I do believe that men and women are capable of the majority of the same things, the fact remains that at the end of the day, we are different. For many years, many studies have been conducted regarding stereotypic views on leadership, specifically when it comes to gender. In the 1960’s and 70’s, there was much debate about the fact that women were seen as unfit for positions of authority. During those studies, while researchers saw that the leadership behaviors of both genders were quite similar in practice, it was perceived quite differently by each of them, more so, males (Jonsen, Maznevski, & Schneider, 2010). According to the case example in the Essentials of Management and Leadership in Public Health book, Dr. Gerberding felt the wrath of this gender stereotyping quite a bit. Her ideas for reorganization were quite unpopular, even causing several formal directors to write a letter regarding their concerns for the plan as well as several other directors within the group to resign. All of the former directors to resign were male (Burke & Friedman, 2011). It makes me wonder if they truly did not take to the ideas or was it simply because she was a woman bringing forth an idea that nobody else would come up with. Judging from the controversial statement made by Harvard’s President’s statement regarding the very few women that succeed in science and math, I am lead to believe that the gender differences amongst the group may have been the culprit. I think that it would entail maintaining clarity and direction when communicating with the group. Whether they choose to listen will be their own issue when it comes down to it. I also think that a difference may be in the fact that women should not let the stereotypes of some of their colleagues bring them down rather than use them to propel themselves upwards. For example, women are seen more as nurtures and ones that show their feelings often. The way that I see it, perhaps that can give someone a leg up when it comes to commanding a group. Sometimes being more in tune to one’s feelings allows them to read the room a bit better than others.

Personally, while I believe that she should use her discrimination experience as a way to be professional in a way that others may not be able to, I do believe that maybe she should have thought her statement through prior to making it. It is evident that apparently, she was quite capable and confident in her ideas so riding with those may have been a better option. Hearing the statement from the President of Harvard University should have made her fight back with actions and results rather than words.

Unfortunately, stereotyping exists in society on a variety of levels. How an individual responds to these stereotypes can either confirm them or shut them down completely. In some situations such as this one, stereotyping has a tendency to result in a self-fulfilling prophecy, meaning her comments made regarding her own experiences with gender discrimination seemed to actually confirm some of the stereotypes (Jonsen, Maznevski, & Schneider, 2010). She speaks of these experiences in a negative tone, basically stating that the comments made were able to bring her down for a moment. Instead of focusing on the negative and trying to prove herself to be competent in a man’s world, she should have placed greater focus on the issue at hand rather than the fact that she is capable. In my experiences, actions always speak louder than words.

As it seems it is the foundation for anything successful in this world, effective communication will be the best tool in making all of these relationships work. The Leadership Practices Inventory is a set of standards that allows for the understanding and communicating with all stakeholders that are involved in an organization. These guidelines aid leaders in finding a set of behaviors that will facilitate better understanding and communication amongst team members. These behaviors include modeling the way, inspiring a shared vision, challenging the process, enabling others to act, and encouraging the heart (Burke, & Friedman, 2011). Because each group is different in their communication needs, not every behavior listed is suitable for everyone. When it comes to discontented employees, in some instances, there is not way of getting them back. They may stay unhappy forever. In other instances, there may be a way to aid those that are overwhelmed with dissatisfaction. For instance, modeling the way enables the leader to find a way to make their personal values clear and set more examples. Maybe if the employees could see that the leader has their interests at heart and that they truly are on the same page, they may change their minds about the initiative. Inspiration is another good one. Again, a common goal or vision is important. Inspiring others to see that everyone wants the same thing may make them feel differently as well. Another behavior that may be able to change the ideas of some of the dissatisfied employees would be encouraging the heart. It is important to recognize and show appreciation for excellence. It is important to celebrate the values of the group as well as their victories, creating a spirit of community amongst the group (Burke, & Friedman, 2011).

Burke, R. E., & Friedman, L. H. (2011). Essentials of Management and Leadership in Public Health. Retrieved from http://gcumedia.com/digital-resources/jonesandbartlett/2011/essentials-of-management-and-leadership-in-public-health_ebook_1e.php

Jonsen, K., Maznevski, M. L., & Schneider, S. C. (2010). Gender differences in leadership – believing is seeing: implications for managing diversity. Equality, Diversity and Inclusion: An International Journal, 29(6), 549-572. Retrieved from https://pdfs.semanticscholar.org/34a1/483f2726a8253a65b1ca2d5896c68792ccf2.pdf

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