Books I’m Reading

April 12, 2012 at 11:03 am 2 comments

I recently picked up a couple books on women in the workplace, and I think they’re worth thinking about and re-reading.

I finished the first one, and immediately wanted more. The book is “Knowing Your Value: Women, Money and Getting What You’re Worth” by Mika Brzezinski. Even though it focuses on compensation, the book also addresses “value” more broadly as well. In the book, Brzezinski is brutally honest about her own experience (and much of it is rather embarrassing) and she also shares the stories of countless women (and a few men) she interviewed. I find I learn so much from other people’s stories. And, in this book, the author and her interviewees are so open and frank about how women are valued in the workplace – and what we can do about it.

The second one I just cracked open yesterday, and I’m excited to keep going. It’s Charlotte Beers’ “I’d Rather Be in Charge: A Legendary Business Leader’s Roadmap for Achieving Pride, Power, and Joy at Work.” I have to admit that this book seems to be much more focused on the Way men and women Just Are, which was a big fear of mine for both books. I just don’t find it useful to say All Women Are This Way and All Men Are This Way so you had better get used to it. (I always want to scream “socialization!!”) I will say though that her point that there are differences between most men and most women (she doesn’t say it’s biological or anything, just that these differences most often exist) and that because men are far more likely to be in the top positions, or your direct boss, women need to be the ones to adapt to their story. It’s not fair, but it’s most women’s reality. Which – sucks. Beers also seems to be saying women have strengths that often really do benefit a company, like a tendency to collaborate, but when they emphasize that quality, it often pegs them into the number 2 spots, not the CEO spots.

So, I mean she has an interesting and valid point, and I’m going to keep reading. Whereas Brzezinski’s book what mostly about value – an important thing in the workplace, Beers’ book seems to be about strategies for getting ahead overall – so basically earning your value I guess.

I guess I am still a student at heart in that I am very much a consumer of other people’s information and I really need to process it my own way. If anyone else is looking for books on the topic of women and work, these are definitely two worth checking out. I’m also up for recommendations on what I should be reading!

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2 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Stepping Up « Undefined Ambition  |  April 26, 2012 at 11:18 am

    […] finally finished Charlotte Beers’ book, “I’d Rather Be in Charge”, which I started quite awhile ago. And, as to be expected, my initial take on the book was not borne out by the rest of […]

    Reply
  • 2. April Wrap Up and May Kickoff « Undefined Ambition  |  May 3, 2012 at 1:47 am

    […] its results. I also tried to expand my blogging horizon by taking on politics and current events, book reviews, and other things going on in my life. Oh yeah, and I posted my first dinner recipe and turned […]

    Reply

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