Eleven Tips on Getting More Efficiency Out of Women Employees (from the July 1943 Transportation Magazine)
“2. When you have to use older women, try to get ones who have worked outside the home at some time in their lives. Older women who have never contacted the public have a hard time adapting themselves and are inclined to be cantankerous and fussy. It’s always well to impress upon older women the importance of friendliness and courtesy.”
When you HAVE to dredge the bottom of the personnel barrel with old biddies, try and avoid all of those women who have spent their long, infirmed lives living in a dark closet beyond even the whispers of human contact. Otherwise, you’ll have to teach them to, well, stand upright, focus their eyes against the searing light of the sun, and convert their guttural sounds into recognizable words.
“3. General experience indicates that “husky” girls - those who are just a little on the heavy side - are more even tempered and efficient than their underweight sisters.”
Obviously, this is where the well-known saying “A husky woman is a happy woman” originated. OR… the “husky” women took this author out back and beat him up.
“4. Give the female employee a definite day-long schedule of duties so that they’ll keep busy without bothering the management for instructions every few minutes. Numerous properties say that women make excellent workers when they have their jobs cut out for them, but that they lack initiative in finding work themselves.”
Women, while pleasant enough, are not particularly clever. You’ve probably heard them talk about how much work it takes to run the household while you’re away being a man at a man’s job, but most of that “work” is the result of their lack of initiative. In fact, several hours of their day are spent staring at the wall wondering what to do next! Additional hours are occupied with their befuddled attempts to accomplish the tasks, once they’ve remembered them. While this is all fine and good in the home, in the workplace (the real workplace), we don’t have to tell you that it just wouldn’t pass muster. Be prepared to adjust your management styles accordingly.
“8. Give every girl an adequate number of rest periods during the day. You have to make some allowances for feminine psychology. A girl has more confidence and is more efficient if she can keep her hair tidied, apply fresh lipstick and wash her hands several times a day.”
Boy, do they ever! Give’em a chance to exercise personal hygiene and wash their hands, and they run like a machine. A machine with mysterious “female conditions” and “weaknesses”, but a machine-ish, nonetheless. (see tip #4)
“11. Get enough size variety in operator’s uniforms so that each girl can have a proper fit. This point can’t be stressed too much in keeping women happy.”
Seriously, folks, women need four things to be happy: tidy hair, fresh lipstick, clean hands, and uniforms that fit. Once they’re happy (which will be more easily and quickly achieved if they are also “husky”), give them simple and specifically outlined tasks so they understand their jobs and don’t end up spending the day wandering around in dazed, confused circles.