In this nonfiction guide for women navigating the workplace, the author resists sugarcoating the obstacles.
Debut author Clark holds back nothing in her discussion of climbing the ladder. A new employee can spend the better part of a decade just learning the ropes, and not everything crucial is directly taught by a mentor. This time is spent waiting for information from above, and little mistakes can cost big opportunities. With this news, a young career-driven hopeful might grow anxious. But Clark provides a slew of trade secrets for handling even the smallest events, such as being asked by a senior executive to prepare coffee for a meeting or to tidy up the boardroom. Depending on one’s position in the company, Clark explains, those actions could damage progress. Clark lays out strong concepts, such as separating the work from the person, leaning in, and performing every job with aptitude and confidence. Clark gives tips on everything from communication and wardrobe to travel and professionalism. The author’s straight-to-the-point style can be funny: “Think of your hair as an erogenous zone. Don’t touch it in public.” She’s also brutally critical of slang and the use of the word “like” in every sentence. “Women should be interesting enough that their colleagues would want to have a beer with them after work. Not a double martini. That’s a different type of interesting.” The book expertly zooms in to the workday and out to the overall workforce, covering 9-to-5 behaviors along with strategies for career shifts, networking and starting from scratch.
A solid guide to handling obstacles a new employee might not even notice and a realistic look at the climb toward success in a male-dominated workforce.