Advertisement

This 1940 Training Manual On How to Supervise Female Employees Is Truly Bonkers

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Advertisement

Society has made some progress towards true equality in the workplace, but it still has a long ways to go. But if you look back at workplace equality throughout history, you’ll see that things were even more backward than they are today.

Here’s a 1940 training manual from the Radio Corporation of America. (RCA). During the early 1940’s, America was escalating its involvement in World War II, and one result was that women entered the workplace to take on jobs traditionally performed by men. And one result of that development was that male managers had literally no idea how to deal with their new female employees.

The training manual lays out several ways for a male manager to supervise a female employee. But actually, it says way, way more about the male manager than it ever could about the people he supervised. If male managers really needed this much help, it’s amazing we won the war at all.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Let’s take a jaunt through some old-school sexism, shall we?

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

In other words, “tell her what her job is.” Don’t just lock her in a lightless closet for eight hours a day. Really cuts down on her productivity.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

These women want to do a man’s job and they can’t even show up on the first day already fully trained to do it?! Outrageous!

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Don’t make her work in an office that’s constantly on fire. Don’t replace her coffee with battery acid. Don’t give her a desk that’s actually a bee hive. Got that, fellas?

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

So, micromanage her. But in a nice way.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

And if you insist on horseplay, avoid the wrench that will definitely be flying towards your head.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Basic managerial skill.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

I don’t agree with this advice. Withholding praise is the only way to make sure your employee constantly works for your approval. My father did it to me and look how well I turned out.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Again, basic managerial skill. If you need to be told this, you probably shouldn’t be put in charge of other people.

There are still two more pages of this!

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Isn’t this the same as “Make clear her part in the process or product on which she works?” You know you’re in great shape when you’re not even ten tips in and you’re already repeating yourself.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

“Education, work experience, and temperament” is code for “temperament.”

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

For example, if you hire her to be a lumberjack, do not ask her to chop down the tree with her teeth. A woman is not the same thing as a woodchuck.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

These tips make more sense when you realize that in the 40’s, every manager reading this would have been absolutely hammered.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

For example, your new female employee might have to leave work early on her unicycle to care for her sick husband, who’s actually a grandfather clock. As a manager, you have to account for that.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Is this a guide for a manager or for a summer camp counselor?

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Alternatively, you could keep all this a secret for her to discover, like a fun gameshow where you might lose a hand.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Wait, they had weed dispensaries back then? The 40’s were way cooler than I thought.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Again, this is less “how to be a manager” and more “how to be a decent human being.” If you need to be told this, you shouldn’t be allowed to go outside.

OK, one page to go…

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

So, don’t force her to work nonstop ’til she dies. Basically, if it’s something you wouldn’t do to a horse, don’t do it to your employee.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Fifteen seconds, tops.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

In the 1940’s, a typical “nourishing” lunch was a 60 oz steak with a side of mashed cigarettes.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

“Thank god they told us about the clean water. I was gonna let them drink sewer water out of a dead dog’s mouth.”

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

But I thought women all went to the bathroom in their purses. Isn’t that why they carry them?

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

Oh you mean those work hazards are…hazardous?

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

It has to be an actual seat, fellas! Don’t just make her sit on a pile of broken radios.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

I want to lie down.

Photo Credit: Vintage Everyday

If you need a music suggestion, might I recommend the song, “Me Banging My Head Against A Brick Wall ‘Til I Pass Out.”

 

 

h/t: Vintage Everyday