One of the world's biggest accounting companies has been rocked by explosive claims about a "sexist" and "misogynistic" training seminar held for female executives last year.

The bombshell allegations emerged after an "appalled" attendee leaked the 55-page presentation to HuffPost recently.

The document revealed a slew of "out of touch" advice that was given to 30 women at the one-and-a-half day "Power-Presence-Purpose" seminar held at the firm's New Jersey office in the US last June.

It details a range of specific advice regarding female workers' appearance, grooming and sexuality as well as a slew of generalisations about women's work and leadership style.

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According to the publication, attendees were first given a scorecard and told to rate their "score" both at work and in their personal lives against a list of "masculine" and "feminine" characteristics.

The female traits included examples such as "affectionate", "cheerful", "childlike" "gullible" " and "yielding", while male traits included "aggressive", "ambitious", "analytical", "has leadership abilities" and "willing to take a stand".

Attendees were told to rank their 'masculine' and 'feminine' characteristics. Photo / Twitter
Attendees were told to rank their 'masculine' and 'feminine' characteristics. Photo / Twitter

Another significant focus of the training was on appearance, with women warned to be "polished" and to have a "good haircut, manicured nails, well-cut attire that complements your body type", according to HuffPost.

Women were also told: "Don't flaunt your body" because "sexuality scrambles the mind", that "clothing must flatter, but short skirts are a no-no" and that the best thing for women to do is "signal fitness and wellness".

According to the whistleblower — dubbed "Jane" — attendees were "even told that women's brains are 6 per cent to 11 per cent smaller than men's".

"Women's brains absorb information like pancakes soak up syrup so it's hard for them to focus," the attendees were told. "Men's brains are more like waffles. They're better able to focus because the information collects in each little waffle square," HuffPost reports.

"Jane" described the seminar as a "women-bashing event" and said it left her feeling "like a piece of meat".

Ernst & Young said the seminar was no longer being offered. Photo / Getty Images
Ernst & Young said the seminar was no longer being offered. Photo / Getty Images

The communication styles of men and women were also discussed, with guests being told women often "speak briefly", "often ramble and miss the point" in meetings and "wait their turn (that never comes) and raise their hands".

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Women were also allegedly told they "shouldn't be shrill" when they speak.

Meanwhile, a male will "speak at length ― because he really believes in his idea".

The insider also told HuffPost women received specific instructions regarding how to speak to men — including being warned not to directly confront men in meetings, which they will perceive as "threatening".

They were also told not to be "too aggressive or outspoken" and to "cross your legs", "sit at an angle" to men while speaking to them and to not "talk to a man face-to-face".

The company told the publication the seminar was "no longer offered in its current form" and claimed "any isolated aspects" of the course were "taken wholly out of context".

However, the allegations have sparked a massive social media backlash, with Twitter users variously slamming the advice as "embarrassing", "sick", "sexist" and "misogynistic".

"It boggles the mind to think how out of touch & misogynistic Ernst & Young culture/executives are that they'd find this 'training' to be appropriate. It's appalling," one Twitter user wrote, while another added: "Misogyny rules sick culture … glass ceiling intact …"

"If us pancake brained women ever managed the thought processes to wonder why the world is so screwed up, the answer lies right here at Ernst & Young's 2018 training seminar," another wrote.