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He's Just Not That Into You: Dating the Workplace

Updated: Jul 26, 2023

Hey girl, let's talk about your relationship... with work.


As the majority of business executives are white, heterosexual men, the workplace culture remains a "he" and can offer similar red flags when looking for a committed work/life relationship.

Conceived from an episode of Sex and The City, Greg Behrendt’s 2004 book, He’s Just Not That Into You, kindly prompted doe-eyed love-struck women to pay closer attention to red flags of unhealthy intimate relationships. Behrendt showed up as a big brother type, a supportive, empowering, dad-persona, in an effort to help women snap out of it and stop being willing to date men who have little intention of investing in the relationship.


Nearly 20 years later since Behrendt's book changed the dating game, women are willing to tolerate less, expect more, hold independence, remain outspoken, and claim their confidence. The truth is: empowered women love to see a generation of empowered women living their best lives.


Now, with relationships in check, let's talk about another highly important relationship. A relationship that consumes nearly 80% of the day, takes up real estate in the mind, guides dreams, and has the power to determine the level of a woman's stability and self-sufficiency: the workplace.


Behrendt says that when a guy is into you, he lets you know it, both verbally and non-verbally. I say the same goes for the workplace. If they are into you, you'll know it. You may even fall deeper in love with your work, increasing your peace, joy, well-being...and bank account.

man smelling a flower
Hey girl, does Mr. Workplace even deserve you?

While the patriarchal workplace can be a dangerous place for women, a place of systems where wage gaps, glass ceilings, sexism, and dead-end jobs snag the ambitious, Lutgen-Sandvik's employee abusive organization theory, and McPhee's communication constitution of organizations theory, illuminate communications that reveal who and what a company really is. Together, and parallel with Behrendt's framework, women can pay closer attention to the signs and symptoms of unhealthy workplace culture.


From onboarding, job expectations, shared missions, and advancement opportunities, well-informed decision-making is essential. And it is the well-equipped woman, the girl who’s paying attention, who will best model the way for what a healthy work relationship looks like. What girl doesn't want a professional relationship with her workplace that bustles with opportunity, burgeons with advancement, and secures a sustainable future - not only for herself, but for the women around her.



Since we are no longer tolerating the dysfunctions of an imbalanced intimate relationship, let's look at improving the health of our relationship with work.


Read the zine for research and shared experiences for spotting a toxic workplace culture, identifying cancerous communications, noting red flags, and what to listen for when interviewing, training, or asking for a raise.



If your workplace is "just not that into you", find somewhere that is.



-Melinda








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