When we left Fast Company last week, they had published a tech trends article featuring the musings of 17 top experts – 16 men and 1 woman. We countered with a tech trends article of our own, demonstrating that women could be experts in tech trends too.
This week we’re going back to Fast Company (the gift that keeps on giving for cranky bloggers). We’re looking at an article where 9 CEOs predict their biggest business challenge in the coming year. It was published the day before the tech trends piece. THIS article featured 7 women and 2 men.
Why am I complaining? There are actually far MORE women than men in this article. I’m raising the alarm on this one because it rings a particular bell for me – the two Fast Company articles mirror the results of a particular piece of research. That piece of research says that men and women get asked different questions.
I first read about it in Harvard Business Review 2 years ago. Innovation Woman Kathy Glotz-Guest shared with me a TEDx Talk on the same subject by one of the HBR authors: Male and Female Entrepreneurs Get Asked Different Questions by VCs – and It Affects How Much Funding They Get.
According to the HBR article, “They (VCs) tended to ask men questions about the potential for gains and women about the potential for losses.” In Fast Company, men are experts and get asked for the big trends in the industry. Women get to predict their biggest business challenges.
The tone of a question tends to set the tone of the response. And, in the case of venture funding, the tone of the response seems to impact (or at least correlate with) the amount of funding received by the entrepreneurs.
What questions are you asking?
Photo by Emily Morter on Unsplash