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Digital Subscriptions > Psychologies > No. 139 Harness Your Power > Bye-bye, queen bee

Bye-bye, queen bee

Need to take the buzz out of someone with queen bee syndrome? Support your fellow woman and give us all licence to rule the hive, writes Harriet Minter
PHOTOGRAPH: mark HARRISON. HAIR AND MAKE-UP: CAROLINE PIASECKI. STYLIST: KATE ANYA BARBOUR

Researchers in the 1970s found that when a woman was promoted to board level in a business, the number of women in senior roles in that firm either dropped or stayed the same. Rather than encouraging other women, it seemed high-achieving women were determined to hang onto their special status as ‘the only woman’ and would do anything to protect it. Researchers dubbed them ‘queen bees’ – the only woman in the hive – and ‘queen bee syndrome’ was born.

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