For the end of selective nursing

October 14, 2022 – 9:18 am

(Credit: Chugunova Anastasia/Shutterstock)

A few weeks ago, I bumped into the Brazilian writer Carla Madeira in a mall hallway and impulsively said, “Wow, I’m a big fan of yours!”. It was two seconds of embarrassment on both sides. Then she smiled, hugged me like a friend and thanked me. And I replied that I won the day.

Carla Madeira is the author of “Tudo É Rio” and “Véspera”, the two best-selling books in Brazil in the last year. For those who haven’t read it yet, I would say that her characters experience situations that push the boundaries of what is considered tolerable for us women. At the W2W Summit event, held this year in São Paulo, in a panel moderated by Cris Bartis, host of the Mamilos podcast, Carla said that her characters practice “the unforgivable”. “Can you forgive the unforgivable? If you can’t, how can you generate transformation?” he asked the audience. This struck me deeply. I wanted to go there and talk to her, but I backed away, embarrassed and left.

When I reached out to the writer, months later, I read, on that same day, a column by Juliana Nascimento, CEO of FCB/SIX, Data & Connections, on W2W, in which she asked the following question: “How many women have done well to talk about the past week ?” This got me thinking deeply, after all, sometimes we need a push for the obvious.

We live in strange times, to say the least. Times when journalists are attacked, when the prime minister is mocked for appearing in a video of him dancing at a party with friends and forced to take a drug test, in which a news anchor is fired after appearing with gray hair, among so many other events that we follow on a daily basis .

Especially in Brazil, being a woman is a real challenge. Therefore, I firmly believe that vocalizing what we want is fundamental. To leave no doubts, to open doors, to support us, to support us and, why not, to give love.

Why not say one women that you admire her a lot? Or support and repeat out loud the ideas of others in the middle of a meeting with different thinking, as they did women from top team during the Obama administration, in a technique they called “amplification”, to be heard and taken seriously?

I don’t know if it’s a guerrilla tactic or just behavior that, in a man’s world, is common. However, for women in the business world, these practices are still little used or considered “weird”. The fact is that nursing is talked about a lot, but not practiced much. In the last seven days alone, within my team, I have heard reports from women who:

– They said that they were considered aggressive when they provided detailed technical guidelines for improvements that needed to be implemented;

– They said they did not feel comfortable talking about personal stories related to mental health, within “safe space“because they are sure that at some point it would be used against them;

– They pointed out the necessary correction via a WhatsApp group and were invited to a corner to privately hear what errors should be pointed out except that they hear that when a certain action is carried out through the group, they end up being very aggressive;

– They told me that on some occasions I should take a more authoritative stance, because being kind all the time, in a leadership position, can lead people to question my firmness or my way of working.

Yes, this is real. And considering we’re looking for an egalitarian work environment, with programs, goals, missions dedicated to that and more, it’s something we have to think about every day.

If vulnerability is talked about so much in all TED talks today and encourages them coaches, why is it that when a woman openly expresses her point of view, she still gets words like “aggressive”, “out of control”, “emotional”, “me-me-me”, “impulsive” or even “overkind”? Unfortunately, in most cases the words come from other women, which is even sadder.

I want to rule with love, kindness and support. I want to explore all abilities as well as be free to speak my mind. I want to bang the bass drum for all these freaking ladies and tell everyone what amazing projects and ideas they are doing. Let’s talk more about us. Give more hugs, laugh and cry together. That’s the only way.

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