MARS VS VENUS  WORKPLACE COMMUNICATION

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INTRODUCTION. 30% of employee downtime is due to relationship and communication problems with co-workers and supervisors Chief problem - how to work effectively with bosses, peers, and subordinates of the opposite sex . . People must communicate well and understand one another clearly in order to r

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MARS VS VENUS WORKPLACE COMMUNICATION

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1. MARS VS VENUS WORKPLACE COMMUNICATION Presented by ISMA SUHAILA ISMAIL 20 July 2006

2. INTRODUCTION 30% of employee downtime is due to relationship and communication problems with co-workers and supervisors Chief problem - how to work effectively with bosses, peers, and subordinates of the opposite sex

3. People must communicate well and understand one another clearly in order to reduce or eliminate the kinds of distractions and conflicts

4. Among the high values that people place on their jobs today is employment satisfaction They make every effort to choose to work where they are both prospering and happy

5. The dominant culture of work is Martian. The influx of women into the workplace is still a relatively recent phenomenon. Since the work culture is Martian, Martians tend to think that Venusians need to learn Martian customs.

6. But, wise Martians who are interested in learning leadership skills, would recognize that they can increase their personal effectiveness, the effectiveness of their team and company by learning the needs and communication styles of Venusians.

7. How does a man define his sense of self? Through his actions & his ability to achieve results, at work and in the world In the workplace, they are always doing things to prove themselves and to develop their power and skills

8. Martians value power, competency, efficiency, action, achievement, and accomplishment They experience fulfillment primarily from achieving results and doing an excellent job

9. How does a woman define her sense of self? Through the quality of her work relationships In the workplace Venusians respect efficiency and achievement, but values like support, trust, and communication are more important

10. They are more interested in quality of work relationships, personal expression, and mutual support, than on Mars They experience fulfillment by sharing, collaborating, and cooperating in the process of achieving greater success

11. PROBLEM SOLVING ON MARS AND VENUS Men & women solve problems differently; they use completely different parts of their brains A man's first reaction is to go to his cave and solve it on his own, but a woman's first reaction is to reach out and include others through talking about it

12. Solving Problems On Mars A man will first assess a problem by considering how he can solve it alone Having to depend on others is a waste of his time and energy His tendency will be to lead or to follow Collaboration is not his comfort zone

13. It is natural for a Martian to seek credit If others don't recognize that he was responsible then he doesn't get the credit Salary increases, job advancement, increased market share, and increased sales all result from the accumulation of 'credit' for his achievements

14. Solving Problems On Venus On Venus solving a problem is an opportunity to demonstrate sharing, cooperation, and collaboration If one can do the job then maybe two can do a better job All those capable of offering competent support to solving a problem are included in the process

15. She will respect the needs of others and include them Women demonstrate respect and appreciation by being inclusive of others in the process of solving a problem By sharing a problem with another, she is in no way implying that she could not come up with a solution on her own

16. She is not wrapped up in proving she can get the job done She wants to give co-workers, managers, or employees the opportunity to become involved in solving the problem To exclude another implies that they are not respected as equals or are not considered competent to offer assistance

17. HOW MARTIANS AND VENUSIANS DEAL WITH STRESS? In the workplace, when a man is stressed, he focuses (on a problem) He may be quiet, distant and pulling away Women should not take this behavior personally

18. When a woman is under stress, she tends to expand She sees all the problems around her She will tend to become overwhelmed She may talk about all of the problems with which she is dealing

19. Men don't exactly know what to do when women share negative feelings He may hear that her work is too much for her His job is to listen with empathy

20. Men must learn to listen without giving advice Give more personal acknowledgment and less objectivity Try not to take her words personally

21. The Do's and Don'ts for Managers

22. To Manage Martians: DO Do allow them to work on their own Do motivate them by appealing to their ability to get the job done - the hero factor Do praise and reinforce them by appreciating the TASKS Do manage their stress by allowing 'cave time' Do act as if you trust he will succeed

23. To Manage Martians: DON'T Don't offer unsolicited or too much advice/help Don't focus too much on fleshing out all of the potential problems of a situation Don't manage stress by asking him to talk about it Don't act as if you do not trust he will succeed

24. To Manage Venusians: DO Do allow for more collaborative work Do motivate by appealing to ability to help the group Do praise and reinforce by emphasizing importance to group/organization Do manage stress by listening Do pay attention and positively comment on the 'little things' she does Do build rapport by asking appropriate non-work related questions

25. To Manage Venusians: DON'T Don't solve problems too quickly (listen first) Don't focus exclusively on Tasks and ignore the relationship Don't wait for Venusians to bring up problems - ask about their concerns Don't withhold positive feedback

26. Five Errors Martians Make in Motivating Venusians in the Workplace

27. Error #1) Thinking that there are no gender communication problems or that if there are any it is NOT the responsibility of men to help solve the problem. Acknowledge the problem. Deal with the problem. You and your company will be more successful.

28. Error #2) Not knowing how to listen to a Venusian. The single biggest mistake that men make in work and in their personal relationships is the failure to listen well and gain rapport without solving problem right away. Two of the great leadership skills are knowing how to motivate people and teaching people how to solve their own problems. The big mistake that a Martian makes in dealing with a Venusian is that he will listen for a few moments to the problem being described and immediately jump into giving solutions.

29. Error #3) Focusing too much time and placing too much value on tasks and not enough on relationships. The current concern of balancing work-life issues is another emphasis of the Mars (masculine/Yang) Venus (feminine/Yin) dichotomy. Even if a man does not complain about long hours, his wife and family will complain. Companies need to help Martians give enough attention to the relationships in their lives. If they do not, both the company and the Martian will lose out (not to mention the family).

30. Another variation other than listening is to comment or do something that is not task oriented. If a woman comments about her sick child on Monday, it is a good thing to ask how little Daniel is doing on Tuesday. The main problem for some Martians is that they will think that the time spent on listening or maintaining a good relationship could be better spent focusing on the task at hand. By consistently spending small amounts of time on the relationship, productivity goes up.

31. Error #4) Assuming and expecting that if a woman is unhappy about something at work she will come to you without being asked. The culture on Venus is that you take responsibility for making sure that others are OK, with the expectation that they will do the same for you. If not, it is taken as a sign of lack of caring and concern. A Venusian will wait to tell her colleague or boss that something is a problem or that she is unhappy, until she is asked, "How are things going? Are there any problems? Can I help you with something?"

32. On Mars it just the opposite. It would be taken as a sign of lack of trust and disrespect if a team member checked up too much on another person. A Martian boss hears that there is nothing wrong, and thinks that “this is great”. If it is a small thing he hears, he offers a quick solution and then goes about his business.

33. The Venusian comes to believe that she cannot really say what is on her mind. Over time her motivation and productivity will diminish. One of the ironies is that a woman who is trying to fit in to the Martian way of being will be the one who tries to say that nothing is bothering her. She does not want to be perceived as needy or whiny. The problem is that for many women this backfires. After a period of time the pressure builds up and then some small thing happens and they explode with all this feeling and angst.

34. Error #5) Assuming and expecting that, like a man, a woman will underline her own accomplishments, and if she does not proclaim her own deeds then she did not really do much. On Venus everything is shared. On Mars accomplishments are perceived as done by the individual. In work a woman assumes that her male boss or colleagues will notice the details of the things she has done. So there is no point in bragging. The problem is that if a woman does ten things to make the office function better, her boss is not likely to notice this, precisely because there was no problem.

35. He will tend to undervalue her accomplishments if she does not tell him about those accomplishments. Over time, she will be less motivated to excel at work. There can be increased tension and bickering rather than cooperation.

36. In order to rectify this situation a man can do the following. A) He can make a commitment to pay attention to the things that Venusians do around the office. B) He can ask the Venusian to make a list of her accomplishments for the day, week or month so he can realize what she is doing. The best thing about this plan is that it also encourages the Venusian to develop her skills of owning what she is doing.

37. How to make yourself look competent to your Martian boss? 1) Refrain from talking to Martian supervisors about problems unless you have at least one possible solution. If you really do need help, let the supervisor know what you have tried to date and then ask for the help you need. 2) If you are presenting problems/ideas to a manager do not ask his opinion first. Instead give your solution and your reasoning, and just let him approve it. 3) In the case of having several different possible solutions, present all of them right up front, with your pick (if you have one). The Martian can pick which solution he likes best.

38. Adapted from writings of Joyce Dohlberg Rowe & Dr. Robert Schwarz THANK YOU & THE END

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