Boss Lady – #1 Reason Men Don’t Call Back

Jasbina asks Rachel Greenwald – In your book Have Him at Hello: Confessions from 1,000 Guys about What Makes Them Fall in Love or Never Call Backyou characterize the “Boss Lady” as the #1 Reason Men Don’t Call Back – Tell us about that.


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Rachel Greenwald

I’ll tell you all about the boss lady. It’s important to set the context about how this research was conducted. I spent 10 years doing exit interviews on 1,000 guys.

These are the former dates of clients of mine who I worked with as a matchmaker. They didn’t call my client back. I tracked them down. My client gave me their phone number. I called to find out what happened.

I didn’t accept any bogus or vague reasons like:

  • “There wasn’t any chemistry”
  • “I was just busy”

I really wanted to get specific details.

In these conversations, the number one reason of the boss lady is the description of a woman who was a little more aggressive, argumentative and masculine.

The man concluded that she was terrific, but he’d like to hire her instead of date her.

It’s funny because a lot of the women will hear that and say, “He was just intimidated by me.”

  • In fact, the men were very clearly saying that they were not intimidated.
  • I probed that question a lot because I really suspected that was the case as well.
  • They were saying that they were not sexually or romantically attracted to a woman who was the boss lady and reminded him of someone that he worked with.

That was the gist of the number one reason. It played out in various subtle ways.

  • For example, some women were argumentative in his mind.
  • In her mind, she thought she was just sparring or bantering with him.

There was a story one guy told me that I think really summarizes this concept well.

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A guy and a girl were on a date. The menu was in front of them – conversation below:

  1. He said, “Let’s share an appetizer. Why don’t you pick anything you like, except for curry? I don’t eat curry.”
  2. She said, “What? You don’t eat curry? Why don’t you eat curry?” She went on for a couple of minutes arguing with him about the curry and asking all sorts of questions.
  3. She thought she was just playing around or bantering. She asked, “Are you allergic to it? Did you parents not try to introduce you to new foods when you were younger?”

He said that it became exhausting. He thought, “She’s just a difficult person.”

It would have been so nice for her to say, “Okay, you don’t want the curry? Let’s order the artichoke dip.”


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He thought:

  1. “This is really symbolic of the kind of person that I am not looking to marry.
  2. I have a very challenging work life. I’m arguing and being challenged by people all day.
  3. When I come home, I want to feel like someone’s on my side. Certainly, I want someone intelligent. I want someone to be a great conversationalist.”

There is a difference between being argumentative and being a good conversationalist.

That was a really interesting description that symbolizes this whole category of women who are more the boss lady than a partner.


Jasbina Ahluwalia

That’s the number one reason that you came across?


Rachel Greenwald

That’s right. A lot of this category also had to do with femininity.

  1. It wasn’t just about the verbal sparring.
  2. It was also about the way that women looked.
  3. If women looked more like someone professional that he would encounter at the office then he was less attracted to her.

In the research, I found out from these men as they were confessing the real reasons why they didn’t call back, they said:

  1. That women should look more like a girl.
  2. No blazers, pants or short power haircuts.
  3. They were more attracted to women with longer hair who wore skirts, high heels and dressed in a shapely way, not in boxy jackets.

It’s not slutty. That would not symbolize a woman they were interested in marrying. It would be someone who had some flirtatious clothing on.


What do you think?

What do you think are the reasons men don’t call back? Share your thoughts in the comments below.


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The above is an excerpt from Jasbina’s interview with Rachel Greenwald.

The entire interview transcript is at: Rachel Greenwald Interview: Have Him At Hello!

Listen to the entire interview on: Intersections Match Talk Radio – Jasbina’s Lifestyle Show

Listen to the entire interview on Blog Talk Radio: Have Him At Hello! Rachel Greenwald Interview

Listen to the entire interview on iTunes