Back to the future

Well, our forward-thinking National-led Government has done away with pay equity initiatives, apparently because women just have to accept that in a recession they should get paid less than men.

So what other enlightened initiatives does the Government have for the female workforce? Maybe these, from the July 1943 issue of Transportation Magazine:

Eleven Tips on Getting More Efficiency Out of Female Employees.
There’s no longer any question whether transit companies should hire women to fill jobs formerly held by men. The draft and manpower shortage has settled that point. The important things now are to select the most efficient women available and how to use them to the best advantage.

1. Pick young married women. They usually have more of a sense of responsibility than their unmarried sisters, they’re less likely to be flirtatious, they need the work or they wouldn’t be doing it, they still have the pep and interest to work hard and 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 point 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.

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.

4. Retain a physician to give each woman you hire a special examination – one covering female conditions. This step not only protects the property against the possibility of a 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, that a minute or two lost here or there make 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’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 the 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 can’t 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’ll 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 can’t be stressed too much in keeping women happy.

1 thought on “Back to the future

  1. I´ve been having this issue out with Ari on Still Truckin’ so don’t want to repeat it all here but my central message is the govt (any govt, incl Labour-led govt’s from the last nine years) are only influencers on this issue. It really is a societal matter and this won’t change overnight. It is also prudent to consider the physical and behavioural differences between men and women before cherry-picking examples of so-called inequity. It’s a whole lot more complex than bitchin’ about the government not doing enough. As for the current gripe, well if it’s not achieving its intended objectives, then axe that cost! Why wate money?

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