Remember that this is an age of outsourcing, downsizing, the near-death experience of the global financial system and -- for developed economies -- competition from places that don't particularly care about their employees' emotional well-being.
Everybody has worked for a tough boss. But is being a "tough boss" different for a woman than a man? Anecdotal, and scientific, research indicates yes. Men are "tough" bosses; women are "mean" ones, a fact that is a mix of perception and reality.
A young aerospace engineer is caught in a dilemma: whether to listen to the world's leading expert, who tells him his prototype is unworkable, or to go with his intuition and build the prototype anyway, even though his boss is against it.