Women in male-dominated industries should take on a bit more masculine body language beyond the usual tips of taking a wider stance and being more forceful with their gestures. Women should adapt their subconscious behavior in ways they wouldn’t think.
Males tend to spread out and take up more space when retreating or reclining. Think of the image of the alpha male executive with his hands behind his head, leaning back and feet up on the desk. Men also narrow when they come forward toward someone in a meeting. Especially if they are pointing or gesturing. Women tend to do the opposite. Females narrow when retreating or reclining in a chair to be more demure or protective of their chest and heart.
Women spread out when moving or leaning forward from years of conditioning as caregivers. These subconscious signals can create negative perceptions by the men in their industry. Males can perceive these female behavior patterns as weak. Women can remember to spread more when reclining and narrowing when leaning in.
Contributions: Alison Henderson from Moving Image Consulting