068 Can Women & Men Work Together? w/ Shelly Witzke
In this episode, Shelly Witzke joins us to discuss her work relationship with men and with Lochhead in particular. They both have worked together as software salespeople and have developed a close but very professional connection. They talk about how men and women behave in the workplace pre-MeToo movement, establishing common respect for the opposite sex and the subjectivity of interpreting words and actions.
In 2017, the #MeToo Movement went viral as social media users attempted to demonstrate the prevalence of sexual harassment. Different people felt strongly about the event. It gave rise to a common point of discussion in the workplace—can men and women still work together?
“I feel that the common reaction of male to the #MeToo movement is, ‘Don’t even.’” – Shelly Witzke
In this interview, Shelly shares valuable insights such as: how men think differently from women; how women can protect themselves by intuitively deciphering a person’s character and how reputation and patterns of behavior towards other people are important in dealing with the opposite sex.
Respect Begets Respect
Shelly Witzke has her fair share of #MeToo stories. She says that men have also been protective of themselves in the workplace. Men nowadays consider working with women risky, even more so if work requires traveling with the opposite sex. The stories of today differ from her personal and professional stories with Lochhead, as they used to spend loads of time together. There was never a time where Shelly felt she needed to evaluate her work relationship with Christopher. He was clearly respectful of all his colleagues.
“It was obvious from your actions and words that you have utmost respect to human beings and women, no different. Perhaps that’s partly where the trust factor [came from]. Maybe it starts there, maybe it’s built there.” – Shelly Witzke on Christopher Lochhead
Context Is Everything
Aside from a person’s reliability, one can note that the feeling of threat is highly dependent on each person. A man can utter profanity and be very vocal about his opinions. However, because of his respectful character, he may not offend the opposite sex.
“From that perspective, it never crossed my mind that I had to guard myself or be careful. I think that’s a big part of our relationship, my feeling of safety.” – Shelly Witzke
A man and a woman can have a peaceful working relationship, just like what Shelly and Christopher have. This can be achieved if the feeling of “safety” is established from the beginning of the relationship. To hear more about how men and women can work effectively together and more relevant information from Shelly, download and listen to the episode.
A software rep in the ‘90’s working with accounting firms and family businesses, Shelly made a bold choice to retire at the height of her career at the age of 33.
Unwilling to continue her life as it was, she forged into the unknown frontier of being a stay at home mom to let her with business degree languish in the idyllic green hills north of Toronto.
Humbled by parenting, she began to appreciate other moms, and now believes that parenthood forces our hand at leadership skills when we are least prepared.
Shelly holds an honors bachelor of commerce degree from Lakehead University, and today teaches bread baking in her kitchen and in unique online experiences to bring the smell of fresh bread into every kitchen.
Spending time with this warm hearted woman, you will crave feeling the blissful softness of proofing dough, delight in the intoxicating smell of homemade bread and learn to listen for the faint crackling of a hot crust as it starts to cool. She hopes that craving will be the beginning of a love affair with your kitchen and your life.
We hope you enjoyed Shelly this episode of Follow Your Different™! Christopher loves hearing from his listeners. Feel free to email him, connect on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and subscribe on iTunes