FIFA forced Red Card on men behaving badly at work
Women globally are calling out abuse at work and the Spanish Women’s World Cup winners are scoring more goals.
Many people still think it is okay to say and do what they like at work, particularly to women. The Women’s World Cup whilst massively enjoyable and entertaining is still work for these elite woman athletes. These women are working when they play and it is a completely professional activity. Yet the Royal Spanish Football Federation (RFEF) head Luis Rubiales felt entitled to grab player Jenni Hermoso’s head and kiss her on the lips after Spain’s victory at the Women’s World Cup.
Luis Rubiales has defended his actions by claiming World Cup jubilance overcame him and prompted his normal reaction to kiss a professional woman athlete on the mouth. Moreover, he felt he was the victim of criticism by pseudo-feminists. Indeed, others have supported him and even cite Jenni Hermoso as the initiator of the abuse inflicted on her! Haven’t we heard this before?
The questions are, Would Luis Rubiales have planted a kiss on the mouth of a male player? What would have been the ramifications of kissing another man like that? Would Luis Rubiales kissing a man be seen as just being swept up in the excitement?
The point is women have to put up with this sort of entitlement constantly and get admonished for calling it out. In many industries, women are easy targets for this behaviour. Unwanted communications from personal touching to physical compliments are not appropriate at work – EVER.
The rule is very simple if you would not do or say this to your boss don’t do it. As clients the same benchmark applies if you would not say or do this to a male service provider then it is not acceptable or appropriate.
Unfortunately, in real estate women encounter abuse from sexual innuendos, to being treated as free secretaries. Women often comply not because they want to but because they are fearful or intimidated. Unfortunately, compliance is seen as acceptance and so the cycle continues.
The Women’s World Cup brought the world joy and these brilliant champions are now having their glory marred by this ugly controversy. However, it is an opportunity to make clear that just because you say or do something you think is nice does not mean the other person agrees or wants your attention. Women are entitled to not want that attention and no one should decide what others should accept.
Women that you do not know generally do not want to be touched or even complimented on their physical appearance, especially at work. That is an assumption that you have no right to make unilaterally. Women are now slowly but surely expressing what they find acceptable and not what men think women want. It is no longer OK to assume a gesture was complimentary or in the moment and thankfully champions like Jenni Hermoso are calling it out loud and clear.