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What Works for Women at Work: Four Patterns Working Women Need to Know [Kindle Edition]

Joan C. Williams , Rachel Dempsey , Anne-Marie Slaughter

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"Joan Williams and Rachel Dempsey clearly and vividly detail the double standards and the dead ends that so many women face in the workplace. Fortunately, the authors also provide easy-to-follow strategies to counter these scenarios. This book can help women claim their seat at the table and lean in to their careers." -Sheryl Sandberg, author of Lean In: Women, Work, and the Will to Lead "If you're a working woman searching for the best pocket guide to success at work, here it is. Prove-It-Again, the Tightrope, The Maternal Wall, the Tug of War, Double Jeopardy - the distinguished scholar Joan Williams and her daughter guide women through each of these sticky wickets. Their invaluable advice is no substitute for broader changes in the workplace, they note, but it can help position more women to accomplish that change."-Arlie Hochschild, author of The Outsourced Self and So How's the Family? And other essays "Williams and Dempsey provide the essential bridge between research findings on prejudice and discrimination and the problems that women experience at work. Solutions exist, and these authors present them. What Works for Women at Work is a must-read book for everyone committed to creating gender-fair workplaces."-Alice H. Eagly, author of Through the Labyrinth: The Truth About How Women Become Leaders "Much of its advice is solid career counsel for anyone looking to move up...ultimately the tone of this book is quite hopeful. Though [Williams] and Sandberg have been portrayed as opponents in the discussion over women's roles in the workplace, they unite in their support for this book's message: If we make ourselves and the men in our lives aware of the roadblocks women still face, and we use some of the many tools the authors offer in this volume, we are likely to see women move ahead more quickly. In fact I wish there were a way to interest men in reading this book. They would get the most out of it." - Forbes "This title is many steps beyond Lean In (2013), Sheryl Sandberg's prescription for getting ahead in business. What Works for Women at Work is filled with street-smart advice and plain old savvy about the way life works in corporate America." - Booklist "Deftly combining sociological research with a more casual narrative style, What Works for Women at Work offers unabashedly straightforward advice in a how-to primer for ambitious women...Smart and well researched, it won't steer anyone wrong." - New York Times


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.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 1123 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 396 Seiten
  • Verlag: NYU Press (17. Januar 2014)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ASIN: B00GXA1QN6
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Nicht aktiviert
  • : Nicht aktiviert
  • Amazon Bestseller-Rang: #153.019 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop (Siehe Top 100 Bezahlt in Kindle-Shop)

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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.7 von 5 Sternen  24 Rezensionen
19 von 19 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen How and why what works best for women at work will work for men as well. 30. Januar 2014
Von Robert Morris - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
In the Foreword, Anne-Marie Slaughter observes, and I agree, "If women act on the prescriptions I these pages and men begin to understand the deep culturally embedded biases and assumptions that mean a book like thus 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."

Joan Williams and Rachel Dempsey focus on "four crisp patterns that provide the framework for this book." They are Prove-It-Again! (a descriptive bias), the Tightrope (a prescriptive bias), the Maternal Wall (both a descriptive and prescriptive bias), and Tug of War (i.e. between accepting or resisting masculine traditions based on various biases). Williams and Dempsey devote a separate chapter to each of the four patterns. Throughout their lively as well as thoughtful and thought-provoking narrative, they provide an abundance of information, insights, and counsel from a wide variety of sources - including their own wide and deep experience - so that their readers will have the tools needed now to navigate the world as they find it.

That said, I commend them for acknowledging, "Simple formulas are highly misleading, not only because different women face different problems but because different women can face different problems at different pints in their careers. The truth is that women have to be politically savvier to survive and thrive in historically male careers." That is, play with much greater skill the hand they are dealt or go find a different game. "Better yet, become the dealer or invent your own game."

These are among the dozens of business subjects and issues of special interest and value to me, also listed to indicate the scope of Williams and Dempsey's coverage.

o "Shifting Perspectives" on women and their problems (Page 10)
o Know the Rules, Then Break Them (15-20)
o Men's Successes Are Attributed to Skill, While Women's Are Overlooked or Attributed to Luck; With Mistakes, It's Just the Opposite (29-34)
o Five Strategies to "Make Achievements Stick" (44-56)
o Eight Strategies to Cope with Gender Biases in the Workplace (89-107)
o Spotting Maternal Wall Patterns (127-151)
o Spotting Tug of War Patterns (179-204)
o How to Be a Great Boss (212)
o Five Ways to Support Other Women (216)
o Dealing with Difference from a Young Age (227)
o How Being a Latina Varies from East to West (239)
o Asian American Women (246-252)
o Five "Signs" re Whether on Not Your Workplace Is Right for You (262-273)
o Four Strategies to Leave -- But Not Leave Yourself Hanging (281-288)
o The Science of Savvy in 20 Lessons (293-298)

In addition to the aforementioned primary patterns of resistance to women's advancement (i.e. Prove-It-Again!, the Tightrope, the Maternal Wall, and Tug of War), combinations of other strategies are also offered for the reader to consider. With great care, Williams and Dempsey offer them within a co text, a frame-of-reference, so that their reader is better prepared to select those most appropriate. It should also be noted that observations such as "Men's Successes Are Attributed to Skill, While Women's Are Overlooked or Attributed to Luck; With Mistakes, It's Just the Opposite" do not have universal application, to all women in all situations. For men as well as for women, the most insidious biases tend to be unspoken. In many instances, they are illegal.

According to Joan Williams and Rachel Dempsey, they focus on what women can do for themselves, given the fact organizations are changing so slowly and so insufficiently. Women need tools now to navigate the world as they find it. But the real solution is to level the playing field." I agree, presuming to add that institutional solutions can substantially benefit men as well as women. Therefore, men need to become actively involved.

What works best for women at work will work for men as well.
12 von 13 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Prof. Williams gives a name to what many professional women knew but couldn't quite articulate 14. März 2014
Von paula h holderman - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
I can't count the number of times I have made a suggestion in a meeting that was ignored, only to have a man say the same thing 10 minutes later and everybody then thinks it's a great idea. Now I know I'm not the only woman who has felt that way. Joan and her daughter Rachel do an excellent job of identifying patterns of behavior, naming them, understanding them and giving strategies to deal with them. Women lawyers, young and old, should read this book. You don't have to agree with everything or take every idea, but it's essential knowledge for navigating our world.
9 von 10 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Excellent! Practical and exceptionally well researched 3. April 2014
Von Dr. B - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe|Verifizierter Kauf
I am a psychologist in private practice, and thus a business owner, clinician and mother of young kids. I found this book really resonated with me. I could not put it down, but tore through it. As a nerd, I appreciated the careful literature reviews. The sorts of situations she describes in the book were exactly what lead me to work for other women and eventually to venture out on my own. Wish this book had come out when I was much younger. This would also be a good choice for younger women as well. Lean In is a great start, but I think this one brings the ideas down to the practical level that you can use to make your life better. Highly recommended!
2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen Must read 11. März 2014
Von Harriet Spectre - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Kindle Edition|Verifizierter Kauf
This book is an essential read for women entering the workforce, or currently working, who are serious about their career. Truly empowers, as you realize the different forces at play in the workplace, and you understand how to navigate/engage them effectively. While reading, I like highlighting the points I agree with or find insightful, and I ended up highlighting nearly 70% of the book! :) Loved it. I've referred it to all my friends and family.
5.0 von 5 Sternen Definite Addition to Studies of Gender and Work 26. November 2014
Von Rhiannon - Veröffentlicht auf
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
This book is a great addition to "Lean In" and covers aspects other books such as "The Feminine Mystique" missed. For example:
"The women who were interviewed for this book, represent a wide range of ages, ethnicities, ad backgrounds. Joan C. Williams interviewed 67 women for The New Girls' Network. These women were roughly 40 to 60 years of age and at the top of their fields. They worked in business, medicine, academia, government, and the legal profession. Three ran their own businesses. Eleven identified themselves as women of color, specifically as black (or African American), Latina, and Asian (or Asian American). The interviews were conducted over the phone between June 2, 2010, and November 6, 2012."

"For the National Science Foundation Project, 60 women-of-color scientists were interviewed by Erika R. Hall, a PhD candidate at the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University. The scientists interviewed represent a variety of scientific disciplines Most of the women worked in academic settings. They identified as black (or African American), Latina, and Asian (or Asian American). These women were roughly 30 to 60 years of age. The interviews were conducted over the phone between June 4, 2012, and October 5, 2012."
With a foreword by Anne-Marie Slaughter, Williams and Dempsey identify four patterns of behavior that create the primary obstacles to women's advancement to leadership positions across every industry:

The Tightrope
The Maternal Wall
Tug of War
After detailing these four behavior patterns, the authors give readers great section such as BADASS WOMEN WHO BROKE THE RULES, options for how to respond to various situations, and how to protect your rights.

** I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review **
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