I surprised myself this week. I became impassioned at work and expressed in the clearest of terms how terrible a horribly bad idea was. It is the kind of idea that could close the organization down. Instead of doing the political thing where I pretend to consider it and then act as if I’ve stumbled upon the top five reasons it is a disaster and carefully reveal them as if we’re coming to them together, I just got on my soapbox and let them rip. The amount of time I have to spend trying, sometimes successfully and sometimes not, to dissuade people from making active mistakes is quite large. It’s the largest waste of my time.
When a podcast about how female CEOs spend a large amount of their time of their time fighting off takeover attempts and managing unsolicited bad ideas and abnormally harsh criticism aired, dozens of people sent it to me (http://freakonomics.com/podcast/glass-cliff/). In fact, a dear friend even mentioned it to me at Constance’s memorial. It is compelling listening.
Being treated like a dim-witted little woman is not new to me. Having successfully led three organizations, I’m shocked by how often the expertise I’m paid for is devalued because it isn’t what the listener wants to hear or because it is coming from a younger woman. I don’t think that’s going to change any time soon. I was just surprised that I had the energy to give a shit. Things haven’t really mattered much to me since Constance passed. I think this is less a sign of my progression in the grieving process and more a reflection of the fact that I when one is sick and tired that is sometimes expressed in apathy and sometimes with brutal bluntness.