Are Women Less Assertive than Men in the Workplace?

Originally published at

What does being assertive mean?

“being able to stand up for your own rights, communicating your wants, needs, positions, and boundaries in a calm and clear manner while respecting other people’s thoughts and wishes.”

Common misconceptions

Assertive vs Aggressive:

Are women lacking assertiveness?

“women negotiating another person’s salary fared better than women negotiating for themselves — suggesting that women actively adjust their behaviour according to conversational context.”

It’s not about women per se, it’s about society stereotyping women.

Negotiation is not intrinsically “masculine” or “feminine”: while assertive bargaining for one’s own salary may conflict with preconceived stereotypes for women, advocating on behalf of family or friends aligns well with that same stereotype.

Being an assertive woman — the gender bias backlash

Being assertive is good for you

Women in senior management or leadership roles

How many women are found in senior management and leadership roles worldwide?

Rocio Lorenzo

Hire as many women possible. This is what we did, and this is the secret sauce.

Jack Ma


You don’t go to the office to be nice and make friends.

You go to have an impact.

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