This is an interesting question. I was actually surprised by my own answer. I have had some pretty impressive people as bosses but one stands out. Maybe not for the reasons, she would like but regardless she is the one to whom I owe my career advancement.
My best boss was a woman. She was one of the smartest women I have ever met. She was also a workaholic, insomniac, and generally not a very nice person. The years I worked for her were long. I would work until midnight to finish the day’s demands only to awake a 5am to find a full list of additional demands for the dawning day (I told you she was an insomniac – too bad I wasn’t!). It was daunting, unrewarding, tireless work. But in the 2.5 years I worked for her I learned what most people hope to learn in a decade.
I think back and I think her leadership style was absolutely a product of gender. She had to fight to get to the top in a very male dominated workplace. She smashed through the glass ceiling and wanted to make sure other women followed. Her view as to how to do that was to make sure other women knew as much as possible and to do this she challenged employees like me to work our tails off.
In some ways it worked. After my stint working with her I was more experienced, more knowledgeable, and more respected than my colleagues who had not worked for her.
I was also on my way to work at another organization:)
What’s your best boss story?
- Women still face a glass ceiling (guardian.co.uk)
- On behalf of hard-working, intelligent, accomplished women who are passed over for promotions by clueless bosses who favor flashy, self-promoting men with “vision” (often paired with incompetence) rather than practical know-how and years of proven ability (bluejaysway.wordpress.com)
- Women and Glass Ceiling (ireach.wordpress.com)
- How to Handle Micromanagement (imageinme.wordpress.com)
- The myth of the “myth” of gender equality (newstatesman.com)
- The Big F: Boss lady (radioadelaidebreakfast.wordpress.com)
- A New Boss who Shouldn’t Be One (empwaynek.wordpress.com)
- 49 Of the Worst Bosses Ever and Some Advice in Dealing with Them (paydayloans.org)
- Do You Have a Bossy Boss? (hullonline.wordpress.com)
- Good boss vs bad boss? (mockingmocha.wordpress.com)
- The Four Types of Bosses We Hate (psychologytoday.com)