The head of one of Britain’s leading management bodies has urged businesses to crack down on men talking about sports such as soccer and cricket because it leads to the promotion of lad culture women feeling “left out.”
In an interview with the BBC Radio 4’s Today program, Chartered Management Institute (CMI) head Ann Francke warned that the discussion of sports often excludes women and makes them uncomfortable.
“A lot of women, in particular, feel left out,” she complained. “They don’t follow those sports and they don’t like either being forced to talk about them or not being included.
“I have nothing against sports enthusiasts or cricket fans – that’s great,” she continued. “But the issue is many people aren’t cricket fans.”
Francke also warned that excessive discussion of sports can promote laddish behavior and encourage men to discuss their sexual conquests.
“It’s a gateway to more laddish behavior and – if it just goes unchecked – it’s a signal of a more laddish culture,” she explained. “It’s very easy for it to escalate from VAR talk and chat to slapping each other on the back and talking about their conquests at the weekend.”
The Conservative MP and former Minister for Sports, Gambling, Charities & Loneliness, Tracey Crouch, dismissed Francke’s suggestions as a “load of nonsense,” while the proposal was widely mocked across social media.
— Tracey Crouch (@tracey_crouch) January 27, 2020
Firms urged to crack down on office football chat which “excludes women”.
Yes, from now on everyone must only talk about things women are interested in. That’s equality, right? *sighs* https://t.co/3ID4peKBd3
— Julia Hartley-Brewer (@JuliaHB1) January 27, 2020
Firms urged to crack down on office sports talk. Why? Apparently it’s alienating for women and encourages toxic masculinity. My response: 1. FFS. 2.Lots of women are interested in sports. 3.Leave people alone. https://t.co/Z8gjOVmxrk
— Christina Sommers (@CHSommers) January 27, 2020
I’m not going to pretend lots of people think this.
But the fact someone so senior says this on air shows how emboldened the lifestyle prefects are.https://t.co/kWdXW7rkhs
— Geoff Norcott (@GeoffNorcott) January 27, 2020
Chatting about football/cricket in the workplace is apparently "a gateway to more laddish behaviour and – if unchecked – a signal of a more laddish culture."
🚮Bin these nonsense stereotypes along with the notion that females aren't interested in sporthttps://t.co/BbyKEnFxcR
— Melissa Reddy (@MelissaReddy_) January 27, 2020
If this is the standard of the chat on the Today programme I’m glad I don’t listen to it. https://t.co/1Lqu9J0TSY
— Christopher Snowdon (@cjsnowdon) January 27, 2020
The CMI is the UK’s leading management institute. As well as providing support to its 80,000 members and helping them professional development, the organization regularly conducts research into how management practices can be improved. However, whether employers across the UK choose to take up their latest recommendation remains to be seen.