Thursday, March 3, 2011

Review: Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office: 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers, by Lois P. Frankel

One of my co-workers lent me Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office, saying it helped point out some of the mistakes that women make at work.

Frankel does not make the argument that women should try to act like men--there are some stereotypically "feminine" traits which can actually be a strength in the office.  Rather, women should just avoid some of the "nice girl" behavior which is trained into us from a young age.  She offers a quiz to explore where a reader's weaknesses may lie, then offers specific "mistakes" that they may unconsciously make. 

Some of the mistakes that stuck out to me the most included going by full first names rather than cute nicknames, as well as introducing oneself using both her first and last name.  When was the last time you heard a successful man introduce himself as "Jimmy" or "Mikey"?

In addition, when composing communications, women are more likely to soften their language by using words like "I think" and "maybe," while men are more likely to go straight to the point.  The result is that men sound confident and strong while women come across as uncertain.

While I can't say that I sat down and read the whole book from cover-to-cover, it was interesting enough that I flipped through all 101 mistakes and read the ones that particularly caught my attention.  I would definitely recommend this book for any woman looking to be successful in a professional setting.

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