What Works for Women at Work: Four Patterns Working Women Need to Know

What Works for Women at Work: Four Patterns Working Women Need to Know

What Works for Women at Work: Four Patterns Working Women Need to Know

What Works for Women at Work: Four Patterns Working Women Need to Know

Synopsis

An essential resource for any working woman, What Works for Women at Work is a comprehensive and insightful guide for mastering office politics as a woman. Authored by Joan C. Williams, one of the nation's most-cited experts on women and work, and her daughter, writer Rachel Dempsey, this unique book offers a multi-generational perspective into the realities of today's workplace. Often women receive messages that they have only themselves to blame for failing to get ahead--Negotiate more! Stop being such a wimp! Stop being such a witch! What Works for Women at Work tells women it's not their fault. The simple fact is that office politics often benefits men over women. Based on interviews with 127 successful working women, over half of them women of color, What Works for Women at Work presents a toolkit for getting ahead in today's workplace. Distilling over 35 years of research, Williams and Dempsey offer four crisp patterns that affect working women: Prove-It-Again!, the Tightrope, the Maternal Wall, and the Tug of War. Each represents different challenges and requires different strategies--which is why women need to be savvier than men to survive and thrive in high-powered careers. Williams and Dempsey's analysis of working women is nuanced and in-depth, going far beyond the traditional cookie-cutter, one-size-fits-all approaches of most career guides for women. Throughout the book, they weave real-life anecdotes from the women they interviewed, along with quick kernels of advice like a "New Girl Action Plan," ways to "Take Care of Yourself", and even "Comeback Lines" for dealing with sexual harassment and other difficult situations. Up-beat, pragmatic, and chock full of advice, What Works for Women at Work is an indispensable guide for working women.

Excerpt

Joan C. Williams and Rachel Dempsey, mother and daughter, have written a book that every working woman should read. It is also a book that every man who works with women should read. If women act on the prescriptions in these pages and men begin to understand the deep culturally embedded biases and assumptions that mean a book like this still needs to be written, the workplace will be a better place, the United States will be more competitive, and the intertwining of work and family life will be easier for all caregivers.

What Works for Women at Work is a project by The New Girls’ Network, an all-star list of “Fortune 500 executives, entrepreneurs, bestselling writers, partners at major consulting firms, and rainmakers at some of the biggest law firms in the world” that Joan C. Williams, a law professor, put together. These women are not representative of the entire female American workforce, in either class or racial or ethnic terms, but they do include women of color, who face what Joan and Rachel call the “double jeopardy” of race and gender discrimination and have their own distinct tales to tell. Above all, these women are the face of female success.

Yet all these women, and frankly every woman I know who has ever worked in either a paid or volunteer capacity, recognize the . . .

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