When Martin Schneider noticed a distinct shift in the way a customer was speaking to him he took a moment to try and figure out why. He realized that the signature at the bottom of his emails had accidentally switched to his female coworkers.
He asked her if clients were always treating her like this, and when he found out that it was not the first time he decided to do a little experiment.
Schneider and his female coworker Nicole decided to switch email signatures for two weeks and see how that would affect their work. Martin was not ready for what he found out.
He shared his story online to let people know the distinct differences he experienced and how much it surprised him.
He said that when he was signing Nicole's name, everything he would suggest would be questioned. Not to mention the fact that some even asked if "she" was single.
His coworker experienced the exact opposite.
One of the most shocking things he realized was that his coworker had never complained about her treatment. "For her, she was USED to it. She just figured it was part of her job...She knew she was being treated different for being a woman, she's not dumb. She just took it in stride."
When Martin and Nicole brought their experiment up to their boss, they couldn't believe how quickly it was dismissed. His boss simply stated that "there are a thousand reasons why the clients could have reacted differently that way. It could be work, the performance...you have no way of knowing."
They don't know why their boss rejected this so quickly even though all the evidence proved them right. Situations like this are not something that should be kept quiet.
Have you ever noticed anything like this in your workplace? Maybe it's time to keep an eye out for it and speak up.