I read the study out loud to two female colleagues in a coffee shop. I immediately receive a couple of nods and yeps.
The study? A survey conducted by Woman Wise – a consulting firm that specializes in marketing brands to women – about American women’s attitudes and behaviors today.
Who Is This Modern Woman?
Woman Wise’s study found that the modern woman is “calling the shots,” for herself. She is a woman with a new outlook on life, career, family and love: she may choose to be married, or be content to remain unmarried. She supports her partner and family, but also expects support in return.
She feels the “responsibility to speak out and gain support for the things that matter most to her.”
At the time, I was also reading Liz Mundy’s biography of the First Lady, and thought, well this is interesting because our own First Lady could be labeled a modern business woman. Her husband calls her “the boss.” She is said to be an extrovert. A doer. A woman who likes to be in charge. A modern day woman with an old-fashioned idea of family, but one who dislikes cooking. She takes care of her family, is protective of her daughters, loves and supports her husband, but expects his support in return.
“What I notice about men,” the First Lady said in an interview to the Chicago Tribune, “is that their order is me, my family, God is in there somewhere, but me is first. And for women, me is fourth, and that’s not healthy.”
During her husband’s campaign, she was one of his senior advisors and also his stand-in. Colleagues have commented that their marriage is a “real partnership,” and to the public, this is clear. It is said that when they first were married, they were a tag team: making speeches at each other’s behest, inviting each other to sit on panels, etc. They share the same academic background and public service passion.
Some may say that it’s no wonder then that they managed to do what most couples dream of doing:
take over the world.
What She Looks For In A Mate
Remember the days when most women would simply wait for prince charming and the white picket fence? Well, not so much so these days.
The study reveals that when the modern day business woman looks for a mate, she wants a “champion in her corner.” She no longer looks for a “man to complete her but a partner to complement her life.”
How She Handles Love
Loaunn Brizendine’s research of the female brain, gives some insight. Brizendine’s studies have shown that the modern female is more careful than her male counterpart, within the first few weeks or months of a relationship. She uses her “emotional nuance in tone of voice, eye gaze, facial expressions,” to try and tell the difference between reality and fairy tales.
Brizendine, a neuropsychiatrist and founder of the UCSF Women’s Mood and Hormone Clinic, conducted brain-imaging studies of women falling in love. She saw more activity in the areas of “gut feelings, attention, memory circuits; ” making this modern female slower to confess to being in love.
Admit it, you’ve probably heard it a few times, “I like him…a lot…but I’m not sure about him yet.” Or something like, “Yes I do want to go on that trip with him but I need to feel him out first.”
And the first lady was no exception either. In an interview with Mundy, one of Mrs. Obama’s colleagues talked about what she noticed during the first stages of President and Mrs. Obama’s courtship, “she was falling hard. But was always cool…she was not falling all over him.” Friends say that she was wary of smooth talkers and wanted to make sure that he was the real deal.
Could it be possible that the modern business woman analyzes her man like she would a new career move or a new business? It would probably take a new post to try and decipher this possibility I suppose.
For now, I found this interesting point from the study: the modern business woman wants to “make a difference, pave her own destiny,” have a partner who loves and supports her, and friends and family she can count on.
I say it’s this simple: she no longer needs the big suburban mansion; she can make do with a condo in the city if it allows her the business and personal freedom she needs. She doesn’t need multiple credit cards, her own paycheck will work just fine. She doesn’t need to call just any good-looking smooth-talker her man, she wants an authentic and confident man she can call partner.
But it’s possible that you’re a modern business woman with a different view. Or a modern business man with something to say. So I’m curious, what do you think?