The Legend of Oshun tells the story of the Yoruba deities sent down to populate the earth. Oshun was the only female god sent. Dismissed and ignored by the other gods she left taking all the love and sweet water with her. Confused, that no project was taking off the male gods turned to the great Olodumare. They asked why they weren’t succeeding. 'Where is Oshun?' ask Olodumare, the papa god. He then explained that nothing told them that nothing can be done without Oshun. Anything that they will attempt to do without women will fail.
Women are leaving the workplace in greater and greater numbers. I also see so many female entrepreneurs (many looking to serve and work with women only.) The subtle double bind women face in the workplace; I believe is the cause of frustrations felt. Overlooked for leadership positions. The injustice felt over the view of maternity leave, the value placed on the work and effort invested. All these and more are causing women to leave. They leave to focus on the home or to start independent businesses and opt to only serve other women. A male only approach to business in a knowledge economy will lead to a very unbalanced operation.
As Olodumare claims, greater success can only happen with male and female skills at every level of decision-making. I left feeling that I was not seen, or appreciated for all that I invested in the company.
I hope to create a space for everyone to bring their best forward in every workplace.
Your turn. What are your experiences? Have you worked in teams of men only or women only? Have you felt a difference when working in teams with both men and women? Share your story in the comments below. Know someone who might be inspired by this post. Please share on social media.