A self-help guide for female professionals at every stage of their careers.
Rencher’s debut brings together lessons that she’s learned during more than a quarter-century of working at unnamed for-profit and nonprofit institutions. The resulting 10-part self-help guide emphasizes how important it is for women to know themselves and understand their strengths and weaknesses, because, she says, “unless you truly know yourself, you’ll be far more susceptible to the whims and behaviors of others.” Office environments can work against one’s sense of self, she asserts; as a result, it’s essential for women to “hold their ground” and push back against men who would take credit for their work. Rencher goes on to advise women to provide their employers with demonstrable evidence of the value that they bring to their companies and to negotiate for salaries that are consistent with that value. She points out the importance of decisiveness, offers ways to fight back against “mean-girl” behavior, and proposes six traits of healthy, productive leadership. The book also debunks toxic myths about losing one’s job and shows how a period of unemployment can point a way to a new beginning. Overall, the text is well-researched, featuring references to the works and thoughts of many business leaders and thinkers—including former Xerox chairwoman and CEO Anne Mulcahy and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg—which Rencher uses to support conclusions that she draws from her own personal experience. Her prose is clear and easy to read, keeping the focus on observations, questions, and recommendations and providing an effective vision of what makes a true leader. Overall, Rencher has produced a useful guide that will aid working women of all ages.
A well-thought-out career manual.