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Sue Joan Mendelson Freeman

  • A woman's authority as new manager may be questioned, but her ability to do the work is not. Women have made their reputation within the company on their task performance, diligence, and concrete accomplishments. They face a turnaround in their priorities when they move from worker to manager. Their task, as manager, is to stop doing so much of the work. Paradoxically, the strengths that elevated a woman to manager are transformed into shortcomings within that position. Women who have always done more than their share of the work must learn to relinquish the substance of tasks to their subordinates.

  • A woman's sense of competence and her good reputation within the company have been grounded in her firsthand accomplishments. The modus operandi that built her success cannot sustain it in her new managerial position. She must learn new ways of working through others whose competence reflects upon her.

  • Professional effectiveness is influenced not only by an individual's behavior but also by how it is perceived by others. And once an image has been established, it is very difficult to revise without monumental effort or changing jobs.

Sue Joan Mendelson Freeman, U.S. psychologist, educator, writer