‘Brotherhood’ rant speaks for whole of mankind in HR

‘The brotherhood responds’ rant (Personnel Today, 25 July) was superb.

Having spent 30 years in HR, I have seen the feminisation of the function first hand, so I objected to O’Connor’s ‘lesson in manners’ (item 10). Once again, she promulgates the man = bad, woman = good stereotype.

In my experience, mere men have to be circumspect around female colleagues these days, but there seems to be no restraint to women’s outrageous language, jokes or innuendos – or using their femininity when it plays to their advantage.

In an earlier article, O’Connor also sought to explain the female dominance of HR by saying that ‘women are more caring’ and have always been at the forefront of HR.

However, neither is correct in my experience. I have had caring and uncaring male and female colleagues and, if anything, the softer side has actually been shown by the men.

Back in the 1970s, when I first cut my teeth in the function, O’Connor’s mythical female ‘welfare officers’ had long been purged from personnel, and most of the women in the sector were secretaries. Perhaps therein lies part of the answer to why women now dominate HR?

And could someone please publish the address of this Boys Club that O’Connor seems to know so well? I have never found it, but I have experienced companies promoting women over well-qualified men just to get good PR. I also note your own pages constantly refer to female networking organisations, but I haven’t seen a male equivalent yet.

Thanks once again, Ranter, for speaking out for a small and dwindling band of individuals – blokes in HR.

Colin Woodward

HR professional

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