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Thursday, February 19, 2015

Throwback Thursday: Get More Efficiency Out Of Female Employees

If the title of this article got you going, I understand. 11 Tips on Getting More Efficiency out of Women Employees was an actual article in the magazine Mass Transportation published in 1943. As checked with Snopes, it is real and here is the cover. (To see the story in full, go to

Here is the article with the word "employe" changed to "employee":

1. Pick young married women. They usually have more of a sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters. They are less likely to be flirtatious. They need the work, or they would not be doing it. The still have the pep and interest to work hard and to deal with the public efficiently.
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 is always well to impress upon older women, the importance of friendliness and courtesy.

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.

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4. Retain a physician to give each woman you hire a special physical examination - one covering female conditions. This step not only protects the property against the possibilities of lawsuit, but reveals whether the employee-to-be has any female weaknesses which would make her mentally or physically unfit for the job.

5. Stress at the outset, the importance of time; the fact that a minute or two lost here and there makes serious inroads on schedules. Until this point is gotten across, service is likely to be slowed up.

6. Give the female employee a definite day-long schedule of duties so that they will 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.

7. Whenever possible, let the inside employee change from one job to another at some time during the day. Women are inclined to be less nervous and happier with change.

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.

9. Be tactful when issuing instructions or in making criticisms. Women are often sensitive; they cannot shrug off harsh words the way men do. Never ridicule a woman - it breaks her spirit and cuts off her efficiency.

10. Be reasonably considerate about using strong language around women. Even though a girl's husband or father may swear vociferously, she will grow to dislike a place of business where she hears too much of this.

11. Get enough size variety in operator's uniforms so that each girl can have a proper fit. This point cannot be stressed too much in keeping women happy.
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Source:Tara Gowland, Seattle Jobs Examiner, March 24, 2009

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23 Post a Comment :

Anonymous said...

This is just as applicable today as was in 1943. Wish there were more like this.

Julien said...

Article has some good points, but is generally a bit demeaning to women. Women are physically and emotionally different to men, but intellectually they are totally equal. They serve as a good counterpoint, to balance the male testosterone jungle. I prefer to treat everyone as equal in my remit.

InkHearts said...

You have GOT to be KIDDING me! Just as applicable in WHAT universe? This article is demeaning and sexist while hiding in a cloak of "concern" for the female employee. They throw in a few "plums" to mask the rest of the insulting stereotypes. No wonder you posted your comment as "anonymous."

rasoprano said...

And now for the men...
Hire young ones that you can train. The older ones are set in their ways.
Given the young men frequent breaks. They are not used to having to do things for themselves. They tend to want their mommy.
Hire thin, cute ones, because they respond better to older women flirting with them. Makes them think they are smarter than they are.
Don't hire older white men. Change makes them quiver and shake. They seem to think the world revolves around them.
Retain their mothers, as men cannot clean up after themselves and need frequent stroking of their egos.
Be considerate about what you say around men. They seem to think they can say whatever pops into their heads. If you say anything to them, they will retaliate by trying to belittle the women around them. Just document their stupid comments for future use.
If a man sexually harasses women, just brush it off, like we had to in years past. After all, boys will be boys.
This is just as applicable today as it was in 1943...

Anonymous said...

Thaks for the demonstration on being "cantankerous and fussy"!

rasoprano said...

LOL...So, "old man" obviously hit home! Too funny...

A said...

Seriously, that needs to be said again:

You have GOT to be KIDDING!!

This article had me laughing myself silly! Until I got to the comments and had to pause to seriously consider if Anonymous, and even Julien, were trying to be funny.

But then rasoprano had me back on the floor again!

Anonymous said...

This is still valid today in some ways. My friend interviewed at Sony (to get her old job back but in a new location!). She actually said she put a ring on her wedding finger and it made all the difference to the male interviewer when she "flashed" her hand over her resume to make sure she saw it. She is single..but it got her the job she is convinced. Yikes..

Anonymous said...

This article was the biggest waste of my time. Get out of the 1940s!

Teresa Alley said...

I thought this blog had a lot of pretty good info...i just try not to take certain things personal so I'm not bothered like many who have left some quotes about this blog being sexist and like the 1940's. (although I see why they feel the way they do)

Anonymous said...

As someone that was thinking of signing up to receive the newsletter, this was a real turn-off. I understand that it may have been posted for comedic effect, but I seek real information in my time online. Furthermore, it IS insulting and posting it in light of the struggle women have to 'make it' was inappropriate. I will check back one more time to see if there is something worth my time, but....


Anonymous said...

Hire young married women as opposed to unmarried ones. Please not all of us have the Paris Hilton trust fund. Some of young unmarried have to support ourselves as we are not daddy's little princess's. Get a grip.

Tom said...

Come on, folks, this was posted as a historical reference, as well as hysterical. It certainly does point out how any stereo-typing is foolish. I suggest people lighten up and accept it for what it was - foolishness that we have moved beyond, for the most part.

Talon F said...

When I started reading this I (and I am a guy) thought that it was sexist as well, BUT having now read through the whole thing...

I think the important thing to take away from this is that there are people who think this way, and they may or may not be the people you work with (hr people etc).

Ultimately, as someone searching for a new job myself, I would like to know/read/hear about every advantage possible when it come to getting me that job, and if I have to slip a wedding ring on so that I make the final cut, I would definitely do it! I mean it's no different than putting on a tie, right?

That being said, I would certainly like to read something similar about guys.

Anonymous said...

Its all gone down hill since we gave them the vote..

Old white Guy

Tech Titan said...

For all the people saying it's sexist, it is because if you read the description, it say it was published in 1943...

" 11 Tips on Getting More Efficiency out of Women Employees was an actual article in the magazine Mass Transportation published in 1943."

Anonymous said...

Sometimes to view progress, you have to see how bad things used to be. I thought the article was hilarious and I'm sure the poster was not advocating for this point of view.

However, if the original article had been "Tips on getting more efficiency from your black/Hispanic/Jewish/Muslim/homosexual (not gay in the 1940s) employees," it would certainly have been perceived differently.

Perhaps men and women will always trying to figure out out to work together.

--Tired old anonymous white guy

Anonymous said...

Okay, here's my version -- 2012 Guide to Hiring Men

Eleven Tips on Getting More Efficiency Out of Male Employees: There is no longer any question whether companies should hire men if women are in short supply. The important things now are to select the most efficient men available and how to use them to the best advantage. Here are ten helpful tips on the subject:

1. Pick older married men when possible. They are used to being bossed around and some of them remember to wash their hands after using the toilet. They are almost as likely to be flirtatious as younger men, but they are much more nervous about being caught at it.

2. When you have to use younger men, try to get ones who are housebroken and only think about sex every other minute.

3. General experience indicates that “hunky” guys are a complete pain in the butt and there is no space in their heads unoccupied by conceit and therefore available for work.

4. Retain a psychiatrist to give each male you hire a special psychological evaluation – one covering male conditions. This protects your company from gun maniacs; “sports”men who will call in sick for the first 4 weeks of hunting season; tv, sports, internet, or video game addicts; unsocialized throwbacks who have lived for the past 30 years in their parents’ basements; and those who go nine weeks without showering or changing socks.

5. Give the male employee a definite daylong schedule of duties. Work naturally finds women a lot quicker than it finds men.

6. Don’t change a man’s job from one to another too often. Men are generally about as adaptable as glaciers.

7. Allow for male psychology, particularly the fragile male ego. Arrange for someone to fawn over each male employee several times a day.

8. Be forceful when issuing instructions or in making criticisms. It can be hard to get a man’s full attention and make him concentrate. Telling him you will take off your clothes if he can remember your instructions may be used as a last resort.

9. Be reasonably considerate about using tactful language around men. It confuses them and makes them suspicious.

10. Get enough uniforms so that each man will have no excuse for not wearing a laundered one.

Lauri Sue said...

For God's sake, people, lighten up! It was obviously posted as a humourous article, showing the outdated theories of the past. It's funny, not serious!!

RSS said...

Thanks for this it really made me chuckle.

Anonymous said...

1943 wasn't so bad. Not that many women had to work outside the home. Men took care of their families until they died. And because the taxes were so much lower, the man could support a wife and 4 kids on one paycheck.

Anonymous said...

Actually, the only two things in the article that made much sense in today's world, were numbers 10 and 11--about being tactful when criticizing and avoiding strong language at work. And those work equally well for men as well. It just makes sense to praise people in public and work out problems with them in private, so they do not feel disrespected in front of their peers.

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