Should We Ban The Word Bossy?

I have to tell you when I first heard about this I thought it was ridiculous. Banning the word "bossy" seems impossible because I like to use that word on many an unruly child.

Sandberg -- the chief operating officer of Facebook and author of the best-selling book "Lean In" -- is spearheading the launch of a campaign today to ban the word "bossy," arguing the negative put-down stops girls from pursuing leadership roles.

We know that by middle school, more boys than girls want to lead," Sandberg said, "and if you ask girls why they don't want to lead, whether it's the school project all the way on to running for office, they don't want to be called bossy, and they don't want to be disliked."  

An aray of celebs are behind this too.

"This is a word that is symbolic of systemic discouragement of girls to lead. We are not just talking about getting rid of a word, even though we want to get rid of a word," she said. "We're talking about getting rid of the negative messages that hold our daughters back."

That really made me think.

I  think having a bad attitude and telling everyone what to do is NOT okay, but I think making girls want to be leaders is GREAT. I'm not sure banning "bossy" will create more female leaders, but I think creating more opportunities for girls to lead and feel good about it would be even better. 

I also know when I was called "bossy" it REALLY hurt my feelings.

What do you think?


JR Mazur said...

We should want to empower our young girls, so keep calm and boss on!

Elisabeth said...

I think a lot of things about this campaign and I feel Sandberg started this without offering up immediate alternatives-- which I've seen sprout up recently.

Not all "bossy" girls are meant to be leaders. Being a leader is more than just telling people what to do and how. It's being able to delegate, compromise, learn and grow as much as it is being the person in charge. I think linking the word "bossy" and "leader" in the same campaign was a mistake. I was called a know-it-all and frequently find myself in leadership positions as I got older. It took time to learn certain crucial lessons and that should be communicated in her campaign.

My 2 cents... :)

Debra said...

In a nutshell, I think this is ridiculous. If we are banning words (which I think is silly) there are many others I'd start with. There are other ways to create female leaders.