Hillary Verse Trump
By Rebecca Sargeant in Women Leaders
Has any other campaign in history created such a spark? A spark that has caused the majority of the population in first world countries to wake-up and start screaming at each other? Men bellowing at women, women yelling at men, women roaring at other women, husband screeching at their wives and those wives shrieking right back. It’s a lot of noise with everyone yelling, shrieking and roaring at each other.
As a woman, business owner, wife and a girl from the 1970’s, this Hillary versus Trump spark, creates what I think is a good window for me to stop adding to this noise and come clean. I would like to share with you what really goes on for girls and women in every corner of our lives. Especially the boardroom. The boardroom, for me as a girl, was where I was going to be part of an elite group of individuals that grew and turned over companies. Today, as a forty-five year old woman I am embarrassed, shamed, and confused, and when pushed I am infuriated at myself and most of the people I found in those boardrooms.
I love my business because I get paid to grow companies. If you are a Sales Professional that I am presenting a new career opportunity to, I make sure you receive fair and equitable share in the money you are adding to the bottom-line. If you are a company hiring one of my Sales Professionals, I make sure the person you are hiring is actually going to meet your revenue goals. I use my natural ability to track the flow of money, assess abilities, and accurately predict the viability of partnering individuals to companies. I am really good at doing all of that, and companies pay people like me a lot of money to make revenue producing matches like I do.
In my industry it is not unusual for me to run into hiring managers who are not completely comfortable with me asking for the details around how my candidate is going to make $250K this year? Most owners and hiring managers work through this very easy equation without degrading into insulting behavior. But then there are, The Others.
(Please excuse me, I need to take a deep breath, before I go on. As a woman living in 2016 I want to stay in business and keep doing what I love to do. Calling the majority of men I deal with out on their poor behavior scares me.)
The others. The others are just like Trump. Over my twenty years career as a Headhunter, I have lots of examples of Trump-like behavior coming from small, one-man companies all the way up to multi-national organizations. I call them the Trump Monsters. Here are just a few Trump Monsters I live with every day:
- The Sr. Vice President of the publicly traded company I worked for that told me to my face, “You are not the look I want representing my brand. You can be a Recruiter but you’ll never be an outside sales person or a manager for this company as long as I work here.” During my employment for that man I developed, implemented and ran a specialized team of Recruiters that worked around his region recovering underwater offices and accounts. Estimated revenue I personally put to this man’s bottom line was six million dollars per year.
- The feedback I received from an Executive Vice President of Sales from another publicly traded company on a proven Sales Professional I sent him to interview. “That girl you sent me is not fuckable enough to be an outside sales professional for me.” I never repeated this to the candidate and I never returned that man’s emails or calls ever again.
- The one that makes my blood boil still today was from a partner of a Recruiting Company. During a business strategy meeting, in my office, in front of my employees, my contractors and his partner, I was informed at the top his voice, “Little girl, I might be an asshole but you need to get up and over it.” That day, I moved the meeting forward and put my staff back on track to meet this client’s needs. I delegated this man to my staff from that point forward. A month later, I fired the partners as my client. Estimated losses in revenue and production attributed to maintaining this client as long as I did has been calculated at $350K
I justify my Trump Monsters behaviors and my silence by telling myself, “Rebecca, you are one bitch of a negotiator. To get a great deal for your candidate and your client you have to ignore their personal insults. Disregard their degrading comments. Above all else, you must keep them moving together and towards a good outcome for both of them.”
Furthermore, as ashamed and embarrassed as I am to admit it, I would tell people I was a “Bitch of a Negotiator.” It took a conversation with family before I realized is not a badge of honor. After a lot of head-straightening and a lot of tears, “I am a great Negotiator.” Nothing more, nothing less.
For too many years, I have kept my Trump Monsters warm and healthy. If I am, an individual thriving in the twenty-first century, wants change, it’s time for all of my Trump Monster’s to grow up and move out. Just like grown children that refuse to grow up, they have cost me way too much. The time for tough love is today. The next time a man speaks to me in a degrading tone, uses vocabulary I find offensive, or makes me uncomfortable, I am simply going to address it right there and then. The same way you would teach a child something new. There are no more reasons for me to screech, the pain and fear is gone.
We are at a great time in history. As painful as the spark Hillary verse Trump has caused, let’s not lose the forward momentum a great spark like this gives us. Today, Trump represents the average businessman behavior in the boardroom. Let’s work together to make sure that tomorrow is different.
Time to read: 6 min
Value: New perspective