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Comparative Analysis Of The Articles Published By Wolfe And Shiao

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Having analysed both articles, I have concluded that the article published by Wolfe (2017) is more persuasive and reliable as compared to Shiao (2016) based on comparison of evidential usage, style and tone and the credentials of authors. Firstly, I would like to discuss the fundamental difference in the two articles. Shiao provides insight as to why employees do not like women bosses, while Wolfe illustrates why women bosses can be better than their male counterparts. This is important as the way they present the issue ultimately influences the readers’ decision. Looking at the evidence provided by the two, I considered whether their claims were backed with evidence and whether the data was reliable.

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Wolfe (2017) includes data from Gallup, a research-based company who gives advices through the use of analytics (Gallup, 2018, para. 1). Shiao (2016) used data from Randstad, a human resource company that does workforce insight research (Randstad, n.d., para. 1). As both authors have used credible sources, the difference then comes down to how the data is interpreted. While both articles provide quantitative data as evidence, Wolfe makes better use of the data to support her claims by drawing clear arguments to illustrate how the data is applicable. In addition, she has also cross-referenced secondary sources, like the Harvard Business Review (HBR) and Forbes, which were also reliable as HBR is affiliated to Harvard University. She has also cited a related article of her own which shows that she had experiences in the similar issue discussed. This gives off the impression that she has done extensive research on the topic and is not a green horn in the matter. Comparatively, Shiao’s use of data is vague and does not sufficiently support her claims.

In Shiao’s article, it felt like she merely planted in some data or referencing to make her claim more reliable and her examples given were not supported with evidence. Without proper cross-referencing and evidential support, readers would find it difficult to agree with Shiao’s claim. Thus, I find that Wolfe’s article is more reliable. The style and tone of the article is also an important aspect in determining which is the more reliable of the two. By and large, Shiao (2016) has written an opinion piece, while Wolfe (2017) has published something closer to a white paper. This influences the tone the author decides to take. Shiao attempts to appeal to the readers’ emotions and convince the reader on her stance through her liberal use of the word “we”. This deliberate word usage forces us to think in her perspective. She also used Hillary Clinton as an example, to demonstrate how real workplace sexism is, where she mentioned Clinton being called names which has almost no direct link to her working capabilities (para.1).

By using examples such as this, she hopes lead her readers into a reflection thinking process. Additionally, she asked a rhetorical question which forces her readers to truly think about their actions – “Be honest: how many of you have attributed a female boss’s erratic moods to PMS (premenstrual syndrome)?”(para. 3) – Such questions are useful in getting readers to some spend time self-reflecting thus evoking a sense of responsibility in them (“Rhetorical Question Examples”, n.d.). Wolfe on the other hand appeals to the readers’ own sense of reasoning, providing large amount of empirical data so readers can draw their own logical conclusions. She wants her reader to rationalise the data she provides on their own and coming out with their own.

Hence, I feel that a well-informed decision-maker, such as yourself, would likely feel that Wolfe’s article is more persuasive.Last but not least, I have also considered the credentials of the two authors before coming to my conclusion. Wolfe has an extensive portfolio, having written on women in businesses during her time at The Balance Small Business (n.d., para 4). Furthermore, She had 25 years of experience in the industry and is an expertise in business (The Balance Small Business, n.d., para 5). Shiao is a writer for The Business Times, and while she has written articles on various workplace issues, she should by no means be considered an authoritative figure on the matter (The Business Times, 2018). As a result, her opinion made would not be as reliable when compared with a more relevant credential. As such, I feel that Wolfe is the more credible of the two.

To conclude, I felt that Shiao’s use of local data and Wolfe’s in-depth review on engagement have significant impact which are both very relevant to us. However, I feel that Wolfe edges out Shiao due to better use of data and a less biased stance. Hence, I believe that Wolfe’s article will do well in persuading the various head of departments to be more inclusive of women in senior roles.

03 December 2019

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