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Introducing the Manliest Workplace Competition: In search of D.C.’s most male organization.

The American workplace’s storied glass ceiling is in pretty bad shape. Female workers are on the fast track to conquering the upper echelons of all sectors of industry, including the nation’s highest office. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton invoked the ceiling in her June concession speech: “Although we weren’t able to shatter that highest, hardest glass ceiling this time, thanks to you, it’s got about 18 million cracks in it,” Clinton said, adding, “the light is shining through like never before, filling us all with the hope and the sure knowledge that the path will be a little easier next time.” With Clinton’s defeat, the glass-crushing spread across the political aisle. As Republican vice presidential candidate and self-described “feminist” Sarah Palin confirms, “Women certainly today have every opportunity to succeed.”

But what about that unsung other half of our nation’s workforce: men? As more and more women enter the workplace and climb to its highest ranks, they do so to the detriment of a group that has comfortably occupied high-level positions in our nation’s capital for centuries. At risk of extinction are D.C.’s manliest institutions: its unions, newspapers, and government agencies. In 2008, what workplaces may truly call themselves manly?

The Sexist is pleased to announce D.C.’s Manliest Workplace Competition. Beginning next week, The Sexist will run 64 D.C. workplaces in eight industries through a highly unsophisticated algorithm to assess each organization’s manliness. In order to determine manliness, the Sexist will take the top 10 positions in each organization, ascertain which positions are staffed by men, then assign a point value to each male staffer. A man in the highest-ranking position (i.e., president, CEO, publisher) will earn 10 points; one in the 10th-most-powerful spot will receive one point. The manliest workplace—-one that employs all men, all the time, in the most powerful and well-paid positions—-can score as high as 55 on the Manly Index. The least manly workplace—-one that employs no men, none of the time, in any position—-will receive a zero.

The Manly Index
0-10: Non-manly
11-30: Mannish
31-50: Manly
50-55: Manliest

Note: The Sexist reserves right to base assumptions on hasty once-over of workplace’s org chart. If a workplace’s chart does not have clearly ranked positions, the Sexist will arbitrarily assign rank. If a workplace employs fewer than 10 people in total, the Sexist will improvise.

Example: Washington City Paper

Publisher Amy Austin (Female, 0 points)
Editor Erik Wemple (Male, 9 points)
Ad Sales Director David J. Walker (Male, 8 points)
New Media Director Joshua Lieb (Male, 7 points)
Business Devel. Manager Sheila Alexander-Reid (Female, 0 points)
Information Technology Director Jim Gumm (Male, 6 points)
Managing Editor Andrew Beaujon (Male, 5 points)
Classified Sales Manager Heather McAndrews (Female, 0 points)
Assistant Managing Editor Jule Banville (Female, 0 points)
Senior Writer Jason Cherkis (Male, 1 point)

Note: The Washington City Paper scores a 36 on the Manly Index, indicating that the paper is barely even manly.

The Sexist recognizes the need for affirmative action in the pursuit of manliness. Historically non-manly organizations face several obstacles to becoming manly. These workplaces deal in traditionally non-manly pursuits, such as domestic violence protection and book lending. Additionally, they lack a male base, making recruiting of even manlier employees challenging. In order to level the playing field, the Sexist will add a full point to the manly index of workplaces that traditionally employ women. This progressive affirmative action policy will help lift historically non-manly organizations from the depths of femininity, while ensuring the Sexist Cinderella-story material throughout contest coverage.

Remember, this is a numbers game. No matter how macho the corporate culture at your environmental nonprofit, if it can’t show the men, it will fall hard and fast.

Factors the Manliest Workplace Tournament will not take into consideration (among others): Presidential Fitness Award honorees employed; history of sexual harassment suits filed against workplace; importance of tool belt to employee uniform; homosocial ass-slapping traditions. While these factors certainly add to the “heart” of a manly workplace, the Manliest Workplace competition looks only at the true test of an organization’s manliness: How many men the workplace employs, and how high on the org chart it employs them. (Additional manly factors may be considered in the event of a tie).

Think you know manly from mannish? Fill out the bracket with your picks for D.C.’s manliest workplaces. Find a paper bracket on page 46 of this week’s newspaper, or complete our handy on-line bracket.

Send your paper brackets to:

Amanda Hess
Washington City Paper
2390 Champlain St. NW
Washington, DC 20009

The winner wins something!