In my email was an invite to attend yet another empowering conference for women. As I’ve stated in the past, I’ve got the power…now let’s do some business. But it got me to thinking. Do men have conferences? And what if men’s conference titles were adapted from actual titles for women’s conferences, like these?
Yuck. However, wanting to be fair and balanced, I looked up men’s conference titles. While the top women’s conferences seem to mostly be self-empowerment, feel-good, rah-rah sessions that take a psychological view (like a large group session hug but much more expensive), the top men’s conferences are all centered around the Christian Holy Bible. With names like Gridiron, Grit, Act Like a Man, and Take Aim, they have calls to action the women’s conferences all lack.
Further, while the women’s conference sites online are soft, pastel, and have warm-fuzzies all over them, the men’s sites are dynamic, strong, vibrant.
Which goes to show you that marketers know that men and women are different. Full disclosure here: I abhor soft, pastel, and warm-fuzzy interfaces; my eyes glaze over. However, I love dynamic, strong, vibrant; gets my heart a-pumpin’.
In any case, a few years back I decided to attend a women’s conference that American Express put on because, well, suffice it to say I needed to do something and that’s all I could find to do. I cried all the way home after it ended, not because I made any good connections or drummed up one bit of business — that was a big fat zero on both accounts.
Yes, I cried. (Disclosure: For the most part, if you see me crying, you better run.) One: I was basically furious that I’d wasted so many years. Two: I realized I’d been ignoring my strengths all my damn life. Stuffing them down in order to please a husband or a community who had other ideas of what I should be; making them comfortable; cheating on my husband with Creativity by sneaking around to make something he didn’t approve of. Three: My strengths have a narrow marketability, which meant I had to find a way to use those strengths on my behalf.
In any case, I was left to seek those solutions on my own because God knows real solutions to real problems are never mentioned at women’s conferences. Their agendas seem to be all about — shudder — Equality with Men, Gender Parity, and — double shudder — The Importance of Having Feelings Recognized and Respected.
I wrote about it a long time ago here: Men and women are different.
Does an apple want to be equal to an orange? No, it does not, though they mix on fruit and cheese plates awesomely.
Do you see farmers trying to make a fruit called orples or applorange? No, you do not, because the fruits have nothing in common. They cannot be interchanged or spliced, though dicing into a bowl always works.
Gosh, nature itself shows us these things. Marketers have spent gabillions to understand it. So, why fight it? Work with it, instead.