The New York Times Sunday Business section contained a "Corner Office" profile by Adam Bryant -- an interview with Carol Smith, senior vice president of the fashion magazine Elle. It had a provocative title that apparently no one at the Times found particularly provocative: "No Doubts: Women Are Better Managers."
Times Watch has no grounded opinion on that matter, and the Times is just relaying the opinion of the magazine publisher. But it's safe to say the headline "No Doubts: Men Are Better Managers" will never grace the pages of the Times. An excerpt:
Q. It sounds as if you've thought a lot about men versus women as managers.
A. I have, I have.
Q. Please share.
A. Hands down women are better. There's no contest.
A. In my experience, female bosses tend to be better managers, better advisers, mentors, rational thinkers. Men love to hear themselves talk. I'm so generalizing. I know I am. But in a couple of places I've worked, I would often say, "Call me 15 minutes after the meeting starts and then I'll come," because I will have missed all the football. I will have missed all the "what I did on the golf course." I will miss the four jokes, and I can get into the meeting when it's starting.
A bit later, with help from the interviewer Bryant, Smith returned to the topic:
Q: If women are better managers, how come there aren't more women in the corner offices of corporate America?
A. I ask you that. I think we'd be better presidents. I mean, we've got a really good one right now, but I find it so puzzling. I swear I don't know.
Despite such frank talk, it's safe to say that Smith, a woman making "sexist" assumptions about men, won't get the Larry Summers treatment in the Times. After Summers, then-president of Harvard, suggested the low number of women in the field of science may have something to do with genetics, the Times responded to the wailing of feminist academics and hounded him in at least seven articles.