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  • Melissa Moore

Time For Female Mind Shift

Women, we are not in competition with each other. The world tells us differently and shouts that we are fighting for limited seats at a full table. This is a big fat, patriarchal lie. Does it feel like that some days? Absolutely, but I still believe that’s because the lie has been fed to us for so long that it taps into our fears of scarcity.

When I was coming up in radio, some of the veteran women saw me as their competition and replacement. One in particular wanted me to do something totally degrading on the radio claiming, “It would be funny.” I said no, and she was irate. Did I say it respectfully, maybe? I probably told her that it wasn’t funny and I wasn’t willing to look like an ass. I did not tread lightly on her ego, but instead reinforced my own boundaries. I wasn’t willing to be the dumb blonde who has the butt of the jokes and ‘giggle box’. I was tired of being talked down to and made to feel less than. I many not have worked with her for very long, but the lesson was memorable.

Fast forward and I have now been on the radio full-time for 28 years. I have seen many young, talented women come along, and have tried my best to be supportive. What I hope to pass along is this; don’t dim your own light to make someone else feel more secure. Don’t be afraid to take risks and have opinions, also ask questions and listen. I’m constantly learning from the young women on our team; I love their takes on life, insights into social media and just seeing this new strong generation of women. They truly are the future rock stars of our industry.

One thing that continues to disturb me, and I’ve noticed this in many industries, is men who enjoy pitting women against each other. It’s so unfair and sadly it can taps into the fear that women have about being disposable and fighting for a limited spot. Insecurities rise and all of a sudden, both women are fearful of losing their jobs. Instead, when we voice what’s going on to each other and develop a connection, then we can rise above the threat. My personal belief is that men who are threatened by strong women, resort to the pitting and backstabbing. It goes back to the patriarchal mindset and entitlement. Truly strong men though are never threatened, but inclusive.

Recently I was submitting some of my work for a national award. The award is prestigious and competitive, and one of my co-workers/friends had won the previous year. She knew I was submitting this year and called me to see if I needed any help. Yes, we were both entering, although two different categories, and she graciously offered her wisdom and knowledge from a previous win. That is a boss babe right there. Thank you Tracy. ;)

When we see women succeed and break glass ceilings, we all succeed. It doesn’t mean a seat at the table is taken, it means a pioneer is making way to add more chairs. Unfortunately, so many woman believe that if there is one female manager, CFO, CEO than the quota is met and you are out. That message isn’t coming from strong woman, but from the threatened mass – whether it’s male or female.

I believe the solution is to shed light, put our voices against the subtle digs and lures of unknown competition. We do not have to dress the same, have the same history or even be friends – we can still support the women we know and work with. This is our networking and this is how we will all get ahead. Instead of the crabs in a bucket who pull each other down trying to get to the top, we need to be the herd of female elephants who work together to protect themselves and the young. We are the herd.

Xox Melissa

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