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Women And Men Perpetuate Their Own Gender Labels, Finds MYOB

Women And Men Perpetuate Their Own Gender Labels, Finds MYOB

Women and men are perpetuating their own gender stereotypes, with women labelling themselves as nurturing and approachable and men identifying as powerful and strong, according to new word association research by MYOB.

The research, which surveyed 1000 working Australians in the lead up to International Women’s Day this 8 March, suggests that while much is being done to try to shift these stereotyped gender roles, fundamentally males and females align themselves with these descriptions.

It found that women were almost twice as likely to see themselves as resilient (30%) compared to how men viewed themselves (17%), while women see themselves as more determined (25%) compared to how men view other men (16%).

Overwhelmingly, both women (66%) and men (47%) view women as nurturing.

MYOB General Manager Marketing and Direct Sales, Natalie Feehan says bias, conscious or otherwise, impacts the way managers hire, act and contribute in the workplace.

Word association: which word do you associate with which gender?


How men see men How men see women How women see men How women see women
Visible 17% 11% 18% 14%
Nurturing 6% 47% 2% 66%
Strong 28% 7% 22% 10%
Resilient 17% 15% 6% 30%
Determined 16% 11% 6% 25%
Powerful 28% 6% 27% 9%
Confident 18% 6% 15% 13%
Weak 5% 15% 4% 12%
Afraid 6% 16% 3% 22%
Brave 20% 7% 12% 17%
Negative 9% 14% 12% 12%
Positive 13% 10% 5% 22%
Domineering 26% 14% 42% 8%
Intimidating 23% 12% 31% 10%
Approachable 14% 19% 7% 34%


“At MYOB, we commit to making sure at least 40% of our software engineering team is female. With only one in four IT graduates female*, one way we seek to readdress that balance with MYOB’s trainee program, DevelopHer. We recruit women as fully-paid interns and spend six months teaching them to code. At this point we believe they’ve gained the same knowledge as a three-year undergraduate and they join the MYOB graduate team full-time,” said Ms Feehan.

In celebration of International Women’s Day,Natalie Feehan hosts a Leadership of Fools podcast examining an exploration of gender, featuring Executive General Manager Digital, Marketing, People and Culture at Vicinity Centres, Simone Carroll, and former Survivor contestant and Partner for Client Management at Affirmative Investment Management, Kate Temby. The podcast will be available on 8 March and can be found here.

For more information about DevelopHer visit:

Women Love Tech

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