I find the term lady boss condescending. I am a woman. I am a boss. But what does one have to do with the other? How does my gender become relevant to running my business?
It is true that I make products largely geared towards women. But so did designer Alexander McQueen. Gender is irrelevant and no one walked around calling him a man boss or bro boss.
I run a business. As the owner and sole employee, I am both boss and underling. But when I’m doing the sewing or tedious small tasks that come with being in business, at no point do my breasts, uterus, or vagina come into the process. Because I am a boss, not a lady boss, woman boss, or girl boss. I crush being a business owner with a vagina, but the vagina is irrelevant.
Tell me what makes my gender relevant to my ability to run a business?
When some calls me a lady boss, I find it rude. I find it belittling and condescending. It is the equivalent of going up to a little girl playing dress up and saying, “oh that’s adorable she wants to be a lady doctor some day. Good for you adorable little girl for wanting to try to play with the boys.”
We do not look at female doctors and say they are lady doctors. In fact, most people would agree that that is a terrible adage to use. Why? Because it is widely accepted that women are equal and can be doctors or lawyers or scientists. We spend absurd amounts of money on programs and guest speakers aimed at showing young girls that they can be anything and gender has nothing to do with.
We, as a collective society, spend huge amounts of time and money on empowering young women to look beyond stereotypes and societal ideals and breakout. Then we pat them on the head and call them a lady boss as if that qualifier excuses our silly heads for thinking we too could crush the business world.