What I’m about to say will absolutely sound biased. But since I’m a woman and not a man and have not yet run into many men with this particular skill, I’m going to go ahead and make a blanket statement.
When it comes to coordinating (as in schedules, calendar, appointments), women have men beat by a huge margin.
If there were a competition or an Olympics of coordinating schedules/events, women would win hands down every time. Gold, silver, bronze. I invite men or women to correct me. However, I’m thinking that it’s going to be more of a “there are exceptions to every rule” kind of thing. (I worked with an exception to the rule at a former job – he’s top notch.)
When I did a Google Images search for “men coordination,” the first few images were of ties which coordinated with men’s dress shirts. Even when I typed in “male secretary,” I got a few stock images of men with headsets sitting at desks but that was all. (And as a woman who has been an assistant at many levels, I can tell you that being a “secretary” does not necessarily mean wearing a headset. There’s a lot more to assisting executives or offices than ringing phone lines.) So anyway, I think it’s fair to say that women are the general image of admins/secretaries (and to quote Seinfeld, “Not that there’s anything wrong with that!”).
I’m aware more men are in administrative roles nowadays, and that is wonderful, but I’m still sticking to my story.
In light of witnessing the hilarity that accompanies watching two or more men half-assedly coordinate a dinner or an outing, I finally got to a point where I came to this ultimate conclusion. Men just suck at planning shit out, plain and simple. Is there a “coordination” part of the brain? Or a gene which only women have? Because women make excellent schedule coordinators. I’m a crack shot myself. I’ve been paid to be one for years.
To strengthen my theory, I am citing just two examples from which I base my claim.
First instance. I have pretty much given up on asking my boyfriend to coordinate anything with anyone, including his own family members. They become exasperated after trying to reach him and failing, and so they call, text or email me, because they know I’ll respond immediately. When he wants to get together with his best friend for a round of golf, or if we’re all going to hang out together, the best friend’s wife and I just circumvent any communication between the two and we coordinate everything ourselves on behalf of our menfolk. It goes something like this:
Me: Hey, is your dude available for a hangout with Kevin in the near future? They need to get together.
Her: Sure, let me check our schedule and I’ll let you know.
And the thing gets planned with perfection. No fumbling, no taking a week. Date, time, place, and an answer to, “Can we bring anything?”
Second instance. Recently, I went to a meetup with some fellow photographers. The idea came up on Facebook from one of the guys in the group and I was the only woman out of four or five people who responded that yes, I could make it (and of course I was prompt about it). What ensued were sixty comments over the course of three or four days on where, when, and what time. The day and time were settled relatively quickly. But trying for the where was a laborious feat.
No one wanted to choose. I really, really, really, really wanted to cave in and just decide for the group but since I’d been the coordinator for previous meetups and this was someone else’s suggestion, I bit my tongue (er, my fingers, I guess?) and waited to see how long it would take for the decision to get made.
It was soooo painful, you guys!!
It was, “So and so, you choose,” and another guy saying, “I really don’t care,” and someone else saying, “Well I want to go to this place,” and me saying, “No that place sucks, let’s go back to Options 1 and 2,” and on and on and on. I was sort of like a shepherd guiding her flock to the pasture of decision making. Finally, after much back and forth, the original guy whose idea it was to meet up stated with finality where we were meeting. But it was slightly gray-hair-producing.
What else can I say?
I rest my case.