Women in Male dominant fields: Your experience. | INFJ Forum

Women in Male dominant fields: Your experience.

Discussion in 'Education and Careers' started by Odyne, Sep 13, 2010.

Share This Page

Watchers:
This thread is being watched by 1 user.
More threads by Odyne
  1. Odyne

    Odyne ===========
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2009
    Threads:
    156
    Messages:
    6,090
    Featured Threads:
    7
    Likes Received:
    6,843
    Trophy Points:
    887
    MBTI:
    Enneagram:
    Heads Up! This thread is in NO way to provide a leeway for offensive sexist remarks from either genders. So keep the conversation civil. I will reinforce this as OP and Moderator.
    ****


    I am in a field that is mostly and have been for a long time dominated by men and so I want to hear from (and possibly share with) the ladies in here who work in a male dominant field or environment about their experiences. =)

    What are your impressions and experiences?

    Do you think those experiences would have differed if you were in a female dominant field let's say? As in, does gender dominance matter to you?

    Does it affect your performance as an employee in any way?

    Has interacting with males most of your work time changed your perspectives or beliefs on any other matter in life? Mannerisms?

    The men can participate too, if you know someone in the family or a friend who is in the same situation. This is all for eye-opening insight. =)
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
    IndigoSensor likes this.
  2. Faye

    Faye ^_^
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Threads:
    311
    Messages:
    7,278
    Featured Threads:
    4
    Likes Received:
    4,613
    Trophy Points:
    892
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Gridania
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    4w5
    A large amount of sexism still exists in the field of engineering. It is better than it was in the past and is improving, but it is still striking. I know someone who told me about how a woman would not be hired at his work because she was a woman (they would never admit it, but that was his interpretation given that he saw her as exactly the kind of person they should be hiring).
     
  3. OP
    Odyne

    Odyne ===========
    Banned

    Joined:
    Aug 19, 2009
    Threads:
    156
    Messages:
    6,090
    Featured Threads:
    7
    Likes Received:
    6,843
    Trophy Points:
    887
    MBTI:
    Enneagram:
    Part of that is due to the fact that a lot of women are considering engineering as a career. I've been told that this year there are a lot more girls in my program than there was a few years back. Also, as astonishing as it was, we have female professors that teach engineering courses. A minority surely, but visible and present none the less.

    I don't know much about the work environment just yet, but I am sure things will change in a few years once all these girls graduate as full fledged engineers and perhaps even hold HR and Managerial posts.

    I think Engineering is taking a route that is similar to what Medicine took a few years ago. =)
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  4. jyrffw54

    jyrffw54 שכינה עוֹלֶה

    Joined:
    Jun 29, 2010
    Threads:
    70
    Messages:
    9,406
    Featured Threads:
    1
    Likes Received:
    6,874
    Trophy Points:
    579
    Gender:
    Female
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    9w1
    What are your impressions and experiences? As a Chemistry major, women are very few. In a few of my smaller chemistry lectures, I have found myself to be the only female. I always feel the need to prove myself so that I can be taken seriously by my male peers. The chemistry building at my university is not very female-friendly either. It has one bathroom with two stalls on the first floor, whereas, there are male bathrooms on every floor. This can be quite an inconvience, but I've grown used to it.

    Do you think those experiences would have differed if you were in a female dominant field let's say? As in, does gender dominance matter to you?No, it does not really matter to me significantly

    Does it affect your performance as an employee in any way? I am not employed, but I have done laboratory work with a mostly male research group. It has encouraged me to meet whatever challenge they present me, to work to my potential. It has especially sharpened my Ti, no doubt about that

    Has interacting with males most of your work time changed your perspectives or beliefs on any other matter in life? Mannerisms?
    It's made me less emotionally uptight and more serious about logic. The biggest lesson I've learned so far is how to be thorough, albeit concise.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
    Odyne likes this.
  5. IndigoSensor

    IndigoSensor Product Obtained
    Retired Staff

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2008
    Threads:
    762
    Messages:
    14,154
    Likes Received:
    1,297
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    1w2 sx/so/sp
    Really? There are more female chem majors at my school then male (if you include biochem, but even then there is no huge divide between it). More interesting considering MSU is 60% male. That is really unfortonate, I really hope you can spark change! Consider starting a group or joining a group. There is a rather large group on campus for women engineer majors, and they have a pretty big voice on campus.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  6. Faye

    Faye ^_^
    Staff Member Administrator

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2009
    Threads:
    311
    Messages:
    7,278
    Featured Threads:
    4
    Likes Received:
    4,613
    Trophy Points:
    892
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Gridania
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    4w5
    Medicine still has a some issues, but yes it is much better.
     
  7. Billy

    Billy Contents Under Pressure
    Donor

    Joined:
    Jul 18, 2009
    Threads:
    95
    Messages:
    4,826
    Featured Threads:
    2
    Likes Received:
    1,249
    Trophy Points:
    381
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    CT
    MBTI:
    infj
    Enneagram:
    ....
    Why do there need to be groups started to change things? If women want to go into chem or engineering they will... I really dont think they are being flunked out or anything because of their gender, if anything school and colleges are female centered in general not as much in post grad fields which are highly specialized, but kindergarten through your 1st few years of college are heavily female dominated and females still choose specific fields that suit them, either because of culture of choice choice being a reflection of culture mainly I believe.

    An interesting book on that topic would be "the war against boys" by Susan Hoff Sommers (I think thats how you spell it). The achievement gap between boys and girls is widening and women are pulling far ahead while boys are being left far behind, mostly because of all the female advocacy groups that advocate making school gender safe for females at the cost of making the schools more female friendly, which as it turns out makes it much harder for boys to learn since they're much more individualistic and hands on and cant sit still long enough to learn apparently.

    As for females in male dominated industries, I worked construction, you really dont get much more male dominated then that, one of my carpenter mentors and best friends was a woman, she had it tough because she was differnt, not because she was a woman. Just like when I worked with a bunch of black guys I had it tougher or when a black guy worked with a bunch of white guys, or a a young guy works with a bunch of older guys or a bunch of straight guys with a gay guy (that they know). But she persisted and eventually they grew to respect her, this is the way of the world. We dont need advocacy groups to come in and blow a whistle every time things arent fair, life isnt fair. And forcing that kind of crap on people doesnt make it better, it doesn't make people respect you, it makes them resent you and ensures that you will never be accepted. Margaret (the woman above) started a womans carpenters committee, it grew strong since the president of the union signed off on it because he was able to use it as a viable statistic to prove that the union is "fair" but she left the field shortly after, not because she wanted to, but because no one wanted to work with her or her to work for their company because they didnt need a womans advocacy group looking at everything through that light. Eventually she got tired of collecting unemployment and had to take an office job as an organizer. She wouldnt admit it, but I saw the difference, before she made her gender an issue she had respect and people worked with her, after, she had to go away.

    The point is this, if you CAN do the job, DO it, if its a mostly male dominated job sector, dont try to change it, just do what you got to do for you, be the example you wish to see made, dont try to push things on people because theyre just going to circle the wagons.

    As for the bathroom thing, I mean really, lets grow up, that was the thing that got M launched out of the field... she tried to start a campaign to force all companies to have additional bathrooms for women ONLY. Because "men are slobs" there wasnt a stall vs urinal thing, we only had port-o-potties on the job site, where the hell is the discrimination in that? I dont want to sit in there either, its why I used the bathroom at the starbucks at lunch. She was successful on that job, they had to get new bathrooms AND hire a company to keep it "clean enough for female usage" differentiating herself even more and the 2 other women in that field. Costing the company more, essentially she made being a female employee more costly for the company, and not surprisingly they got rid of her.

    Mens bathrooms have stalls as well as urinals, if youre in a building with 99 men and youre the lone woman, just use the mens bathroom stalls, I promise they wont peek they dont care.
     
  8. Lerxst

    Lerxst Well-known member

    Joined:
    Jul 3, 2010
    Threads:
    122
    Messages:
    2,381
    Likes Received:
    743
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    I'm a male in a female dominated industry... I do occasionally get the "are you gay?" look.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  9. PoetessK

    PoetessK Regular Poster

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2010
    Threads:
    4
    Messages:
    78
    Likes Received:
    22
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    INTJ
    Enneagram:
    9 so/sp/sx
    What are your impressions and experiences? I was a female working in construction of all things. I had owned my own business and at first it was tough. I had to take a lot a stands for myself in the field and on site, especially when getting the "Little Lady, you shouldn't be out here" routine. Now, I did not get that from all the guys, just a few die hards, but eventually with time, conversation, proving my abilities, I earned their respect.

    Do you think those experiences would have differed if you were in a female dominant field let's say? As in, does gender dominance matter to you? I think it would have been much different. I found myself very frustrated on occasion because I felt I was hitting roadblocks just because of my gender, even though I knew full well how to do my job. Being owner of the company, I found, does not automatically mean they trust in your abilities. It mattered to me before, but no longer since I found way to navigate it, keep my cool, and make connections with my peers.

    Does it affect your performance as an employee in any way? It did because instead of just going in and doing my job I had to start adjusting how I did things. If I messed up, well those old die hards would not let me live it down and my biz reputation was on the line. It was stressful for a bit to have to do everything "better" just to prove my worth.


    Has interacting with males most of your work time changed your perspectives or beliefs on any other matter in life? Mannerisms?
    I had to really think on this one. I think it's made me harder in some ways, I used to be more tolerant and patient but I developed a steel core and thicker skin in this business, I had to.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  10. ~jet

    ~jet Director of Space Exploration

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2010
    Threads:
    30
    Messages:
    1,172
    Likes Received:
    219
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    4w5 or 5w4, so/sp/sx
    I do Programming/IT stuff... I can say that during college for this, the guys attending the classes outnumbered the women 20 to 1, easily... at the BEGINNING; and worse toward the end. Top this off with a few threads I've encountered over the years in which I've heard women complain about being so outnumbered in this field. I came away thinking (along with every single other guy who commented) 'Why???? We'd LOVE to have you.' It never made any sense to me, unless either women (as a massive generality) trend toward disliking this particular science or are otherwise raised, far previous to encountering such a geek-infested field, to think they'll be maligned if they try to enter it. All I can say is, from inside that field, this is not true at all... especially not now that my generation is taking the reigns.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  11. Siamese cat

    Siamese cat Madame Cat strikes again

    Joined:
    Jan 29, 2010
    Threads:
    33
    Messages:
    2,043
    Likes Received:
    502
    Trophy Points:
    672
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    5w4
    I work in a field that's from all fields of electrical engineering in my country the most dominated by males.

    Hmmm the worst thing that can happen to a woman in a male domineering field (or to a male in a women domineering field) is to start believing in things that people filled with prejudice say to them. There will inevitable be some of them who are saturated with fear that a girl could be better than them and they will sabotage her every way they can. But the reward of working with guys who are not afraid of working with women is worth putting up with several sad souls along the way.

    I started believing what those sad souls were telling me and it drove me insane of trying to prove that I can be on the same level as guys around me are. I tried to be prepared for every stupid possibility, for every situation that might happen, until I worn myself completely, because that is just not possible. I fought with myself to get free from those stupid prejudices, and I think that I've won.

    I work mostly with guys from several engineering fields and with various degree levels, and most of them really respect me. I don't have an answer to every question and neither do they, but we do great things together and I have learned a lot from them as they are from me.

    I became a lot more laid back and relaxed from working mostly with guys.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  12. The Jester

    In social sciences women outnumber men.
    My experience with criminology:
    8:1 ratio.

    Now all the males I knew have failed, except for one, who passed half his courses <.<
    Luckily I'm not intimidated by women.
     
  13. 1whitehorse1

    1whitehorse1 Regular Poster

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2010
    Threads:
    1
    Messages:
    100
    Likes Received:
    53
    Trophy Points:
    587
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    That's awesome. I've worked in female-dominant office environments but I'm thinking of going back to school for Graphics/Design, basically post-grad courses, to learn new skills and have an actual career in an area I really should have pursued out of high school. The government here has a funded program that supports 'Second Career' training, which my INTJ friend is already doing for microbiology. We shall see.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  14. On my own path

    On my own path Community Member

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2009
    Threads:
    8
    Messages:
    219
    Likes Received:
    19
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    ProbablyINFJ
    In general, perhaps. But please do not forget that there are exceptions to these rules. While I do agree that in general it would be beneficial if accommodations are made for such individuals who prefer or have a proclivity for the mentioned type of learning style, I believe care should be taken.For example, throughout my academic undertakings I actually had a disdain for the practical components of many courses- in labs I liked and even loved authoring the reports but outright loathed most of the experiments themselves- in seemingly stark contrast to most of my classmates. I also did not have any problems siting down and learning. I also know of several other people who violate or otherwise do not adhere to the generalities. If you do not mind my asking,can you expound further on your definition of "individualistic" as you used in this context? A preference for working alone as opposed to in groups?



    I think our best strategy in education would be to analyse the psychological and intellectual needs of individuals and then use such insight to structure a curriculum for each different type of learner. Following from Garner's theory of multiple intelligences there may be at least eight different learning styles- who knows how many more there are.

    I recently read an interesting quote:

    I know such an approach is perhaps overly ambitious, but where Kathryn Mongon's words on the matter can be applied, I personally believe it should
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
    #14 On my own path, Oct 19, 2010
    Last edited: Oct 19, 2010
  15. middle1

    middle1 Hellur

    Joined:
    Feb 21, 2010
    Threads:
    21
    Messages:
    1,544
    Likes Received:
    333
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    INFJ
    Enneagram:
    Undecided
    I work in a political office. There is balance there.

    However, the people we deal with daily, land men, oil and gas company employees, political types, attorneys etc. are predominately male.

    Most are pretty accepting of me. But...

    I live in the south where things are still a little old fashion. I'm young and a woman, so alot of them assume I can't help them, they ask for someone else. I once had a man say "Isn't there any one older that works here?". He wouldn't let me help him.

    When I was 18 I worked at an autoparts store. No doubt that's a male dominated industry. Two men approached the counter asking for help, I told them I could help them. One said "Get me a guy, I don't believe in women's liberation." I thought he was joking, but he wasn't.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
  16. Phoenix Down

    Phoenix Down Permanent Fixture

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2010
    Threads:
    80
    Messages:
    968
    Likes Received:
    171
    Trophy Points:
    0
    MBTI:
    ENTP
    Enneagram:
    3w?
    Engineering...

    Yep. Definitely a boys club.

    I'm sorry, I don't know how to answer your questions.

    As in I really don't know how to articulate how I feel. It's a strange feeling, no doubt, but I don't know what to make of it.

    I can't say that the fact makes no difference, because it does.
    But I can't say I'm particularly concerned.
     
    Stop hovering to collapse... Click to collapse... Hover to expand... Click to expand...
Loading...

Share This Page