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Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office: 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers
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If you work nonstop without a break...worry about offending others and back down too easily...explain too much when asked for information....or "poll" your friends and colleagues before making a decision, chances are you have been bypassed for promotions and ignored when you expressed your ideas. Although you may not be aware of it, girlish behaviors such as these are sabotaging your career!

Dr. Lois Frankel reveals why some women roar ahead in their careers while others stagnate. She's spotted a unique set of behaviors--101 in all--that women learn in girlhood that sabotage them as adults. Now, in this groudbreaking guide, she helps you eliminate these unconscious mistakes that could be holding you back--and offers invaluable coaching tips you can easily incorporate into your social and business skills. If you recognize and change the behaviors that say "girl" not "woman", the results will pay off in carrer opportunites you never thought possible--and in an image that identifies you as someone with the power and know-how to occupy the corner office.

Customer Reviews:

  • Gotta read this!
    Every woman should read this book. The assessment gives you a starting point and you won't need to read every page...just those that apply. Everything else is a bonus. I swear! The material will enlighten you and stick with you years after you've read it. Practice will make it stick. I've given this book as gifts. Even if you are not ready to apply yourself to practice, just recognizing how you are perceived is worth it. Buy this book and read it today! It's not about becoming an overachieving "B" and man hater; it's about learning to play the game....more info
  • Happy Customer
    Excellent book, which opens your eyes to all the important subtleties in the office. A must have for every woman in the workplace!...more info
  • Life Saver
    This is one of the best books I have read this year. Its full of coaching tips and solutions to basic mistakes women make. Its a practical guide that has real world results. If you're a woman and you want to make it in the world today on your own merit, then this is the book for you!...more info
  • Excellent wake-up call
    Lois Frankel gives straight advice about common problems women create for themselves in the work place. I recognized about 80% of them that I have committed. She gives great coaching advice on how to avoid the problems, as well....more info
  • Realism or surrender?
    The general theme of this book is, to quote Lerner and Loewe in My Fair Lady, "Why Can't a Woman be More Like a Man?"

    Frankel does point out some behavioral tics that women would do well to ditch, like the infamous framing of statements as questions. But she goes far beyond that to advocate what is essentially a complete overhaul of behavior, appearance, speech, body language, office decor and relationship style. Women are urged to act in ways that feel unnatural all day, every work day. I don't think even Meryl Streep could keep that up for long. Work is inherently stressful and exhausting enough without pretending to be something you're not 50 hours a week.

    Frankel encourages women to think that to be female is to be inherently flawed. Freud must be smiling, wherever he is.

    Maybe to some women the pursuit of "the corner office" or however they define outward success is worth sacrificing their personhood, but I question the assumption that male behavior is the normative standard to which women must conform---or fail. The corporate and political worlds have historically been dominated by supposedly male traits of aggression, competitiveness and "winner take all" (I doubt, by the way, whether men as a group consistently display those traits), and look where that's gotten us--Enron, obscene executive compensation at the expense of other employees, falling middle class wages, growing disparity between wealth and poverty, foreign policy debacles. I think women should be trying to improve the organizations of which they are a part instead of slavishly copying male behavior that has proved dysfunctional. Let's face it---a man is going to "outman" a woman every time.
    ...more info
  • HIGHLY recommended for every professional woman
    I hadn't realized just how many things I was doing on a daily basis that were keeping me from acheiving my full potential at work. Some things in this book applied to me, others did not, but I have learned what I have been doing that is holding me back from moving forward at work and am working on changing those bad habits. A MUST READ for every professional woman. ...more info
  • Finally: Real Help
    I wish this book had been available when I graduated from college. I might be earning twice what I do now.

    I've told my 76-year old mom to buy this book for her college-bound granddaughters. It will help my nieces prepare for their careers and it's a gift she can afford on a limited income....more info
  • Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office 101
    This is a really important book that I would recommend to every woman currently in the business world, or about to enter it. I am planning to share this book with both of my daughters and help them avoid making some of the same mistakes I made early in my career, in my attitude, dress, and actions....more info
  • Not Just for Nice Girls
    I know I am stepping out on a limb here, but with the exception of a small number of pages in the book dealing with clothing and makeup, this book is equally applicable to both men and women. I wish the title wasn't so limiting. As someone who is not sitting in the corner office, I learned a great deal from this book, and would encourage other guys to read Lois Frankel as well....more info
  • The most truthful book a girl can ask for! Could not put down!
    I love every chapter in this book as it speaks volumes to me. I used to work in a corporate office as a programmer. Knowing what I know from working in that environment, it was like she had been working beside me for years! This explained a lot of issues to me which I did not know as I never worked in corporate before. Now that I am advancing on skill and education, this book has given me confidence on managing issues in my career and "not acting like a girl".

    This is a must have for anyone who thinks they can get into upper management by a blink of their eyelashes or brushing their hair back like a Cover Girl model. It doesn't work that way folks. To make it in the corporate world, a woman needs to know how to do it correctly and by all means she needs to earn her way up that corporate ladder to the larger pay scale....more info
  • Have a backbone...choose to be a nice girl
    The advice in this book looks good on the surface, but it is ultimately about feeding selfish ambition, rather than valuing oneself and exercising true leadership through service.

    For example, the book's "Mistake 10 - Being the Conscience" mentions women who have bravely stood against corruption. But Frankel's take is that it is generally a mistake to stand beside "rigid interpretations". The truth is that if any of us (male or female) don't have the backbone to abide by and advocate a higher standard, we don't deserve to be leaders in our organizations.

    This book will confuse people about what to do in otherwise clear-cut situations. I suggest instead the book "The Servant" by James C Hunter. It goes to the heart of true leadership.

    This book also devalues girlhood and the best qualities of nice girls: kindness, modesty, collaboration. These are the very qualities most needed now by our families, communities, and organizations....more info
  • Great information for certain people.
    This book is written specifically for women who feel that there are hidden roadblocks to their sucess in the business world. There are other women who deny/don't care about these same issues. Thus, it is not for everyone. First chapter "self-diagnosis" tells it all. If you want to change, it will help....more info
  • Relevant, tactical and entertaining
    The self assessment helps you target which areas of the book to focus on. Recommendations for behavioral/perceptual changes are easy to understand and implement. The anecdotes bring the lessons to life. I highly recommend this book and use it at work to coach female employees (and sometimes even males!)...more info
  • From a Father's Perspective
    As a father of two toddler daughters, I read Dr. Frankel's book to open my mind to ways I could avoid instilling in them unhelpful behaviors. I found a well thought out list of workable suggestions focussed mostly on a few central topics - better communication and ways to play "the game" without merely adopting behaviors typical to men. This book does not make judgments about how the business world operates mainly according to historically male behavior. Rather, it focuses on how to work within this world without changing who you are.

    Some of the suggestions were definitely simplistic ("have a firm handshake") while others were more involved (defining your "personal brand" and promoting it to others). Mostly they were common sense business tactics and strategies for self marketing that one could find in countless business self-help books. Indeed, I found several helpful suggestions that I felt were applicable to myself. Overall, much of the advice could have been pulled from a bigger picture course for men and women on how to interact more effectively in the workplace.

    In Dr. Frankel's book this information is obviously presented from a woman's perspective. She states in the first pages of the book that not all points will apply to any one person, that the way to use the book is to select those behaviors that are the biggest hindrances to the reader's advancement and then follow her advice to change those behaviors. She makes an attempt not to suggest women act like men, but rather "quit bein' a girl".

    The tone can sometimes feel condescending which will be off-putting to some readers, but if one looks past this there is a range of good advice covering many topics. Dr. Frankel's frequent use of anecdotes from her consulting career serves to make the book readable without feeling like a textbook or list of action items.

    I believe many women would find this book helpful in identifying and modifying behavior that is giving others the wrong impression of who they are or even masking their true capabilities. Men, too, can find new ways to understand women's behavior and hopefully achieve greater communication through that understanding. As a father I feel more aware of some things to focus on or avoid as I raise my daughters. This book will not feel useful to everyone, but for those who approach it with an open mind it can provide new insight into business relationships between the sexes....more info
  • Review of Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office...
    This book illuminates the absolute basics, things that you need to know to survive and thrive in any work situation. Unfortunately, for many people, particularly women like me, this information, which is obvious to many people who were lucky enough to have it built in, possibly because they had a good upbringing, is not so obvious. I know I have floundered again and again, because I ignored politics and hoped they would simply go away if I ignored them. I, like many others, had my head buried in the perennial sand.

    For people like me, this book is a wake-up call. And where did I see it at first? In the Unemployment Office, of course. And with the help of this book, as well as some other things, I hope I will not have to visit the said office any time soon....more info
  • Boldly truthful with useful insights as to why we do what we do
    Got the recommendation from Dr. Laura's website. Fun, quick read, with valuable information and insight....more info
  • Nice girls don't get the corner office book review
    Some good pointers and some content is fairly obvious. I liked the self-assessment tool in the first chapter and the organization. ...more info
  • Get one for your daughter...and one for your son.
    I must have picked up and put back this book 10 times on 10 visits to the bookstore before I actually purchased it. I mean, I've been doing this working in an office shtick for 20 years and you'd think I'd have learned the types of behaviours that work and the ones that don't. But the better part of me won out.

    Frankel is an executive coach who has written what I believe is the most valuable book one could give to new professional, female or male. For each mistake, she tells a story of someone who has made the mistake and the price they pay. Then on the next page she gives tips on how to correct or avoid the behaviour. I can see myself in some of these situations, especially early in my career.

    Chapter 1 contains a self assessment, along with a description of how people learn to change their behaviours. I especially like the discussion about unconscious competence.

    Chapter 2, How You Play the Game, discusses the types of work styles and approaches that get women into trouble - pinching company pennies, doing the work of others, working too hard, among others.

    How You Act, Chapter 3, covers the tough problems that I constantly see women project: polling others before making a decision, needing to be liked, sharing too much personal information, decorating your office like a living room, and more.

    Chapter 4, How You Think, delves into the problems women face when they think too much: viewing men as father figures, refusing perks, and making up negative stories. I found this chapter to be right on the button when comes to how women think.

    The fifth chapter, How You Brand and Market Yourself keyed in on important aspects of how women diminish their position in order to be "nice". Minimizing your work or position, using only your nickname or first name, waiting to be noticed, working in stereotypical roles or departments were some of the most common mistakes I see women make.

    Chapter 6, How You Sound, focused on how we women communicate: too much explaining, asking permission (we know what Grace Hopper said about this), apologizing, talking too fast, speaking softly, using touchy-feely language. Two of the mistakes are ones that I see all the time and I have witnessed how they negatively affect a women's chances for promotion: couching statements as questions, and the killer mistake, using long preambles. If you make these two mistakes on a regular basis, you need to get your hands on this book.

    Chapter 7, How You Look, discusses how you present yourself, makeup mistakes, how you sit, how you dress.

    Chapter 8, How You Respond, deals with how you respond to awkward and tough situations. One of my favourites here is what to say when you are asked to make coffee, get copies, or take notes. I learned very early in my career to choose to do these tasks poorly. My direct boss knew right away that I was faking it, but his bosses learned to ask some other woman to do it. Frankel here suggest to refuse and I'm not sure how that would go over. My rule is "never be good at something you don't want to do for the rest of your career."

    The appendix has resources for further development.

    I read this book thinking "do I do that" much of the way through and I believe that's a great thing to get out of this book. I highly recommend this to all new professionals, as many of the mistakes are made by men as well.
    ...more info
  • A mistake not to read this one
    An easy to read guide of the things that women can and often do in the workplace to make themselves seem inferior.
    As I read this I thought of myself or other women that I know making many of these mistakes, it also made me think of my male colleuges and the way that they did not.
    This isn't a guide to "Be The Man" but instead a guide to find ways to overcome some of the primarily female work traits that can cause us to become so bogged down in other people problems, that we can forget to focus on our own goals....more info
  • A must read for any Woman in a "man's" world
    This book is beyond helpful, and is presented in a manner that allows the reader to not only evaluate herself, but to immediately put into action solutions to potential problems. Each chapter is broken down into subjects that can affect a woman's progress up the ladder, with a mistake listed on one page and solutions to apply to the workplace on the next.

    This is a no-nonsense book that is written by a woman for women, so "quit bein' a girl" and buy this book! The insight and results are more than impressive - they're life changing. ...more info
  • A useful guide if you can look past a few flaws
    "Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office" is a very practical book for any woman interested in moving ahead in her career and getting what she deserves. It is not targeted at any particular segment but instead it contains a lot of helpful, no-nonsense advice no matter where you are in your career, whether you work for a company or have your own business. Even the most accomplished and successful women will undoubtedly find in it some useful suggestions that they can implement to be all the more effective.

    The book is organized in a very structured manner. It contains the 101 mistakes, grouped into seven categories:
    - How You Play the Game
    - How You Act
    - How You Think
    - How You Brand and Market Yourself
    - How You Sound
    - How You Look
    - How You Respond
    At the beginning of the book, you are given an opportunity to take a self-assessment to determine which of these areas you are the strongest in, and where you have opportunities for improvement. That way, you can jump directly to the section where you received the lowest score and begin working from there.

    Each of the 101 mistakes is described with specific examples, and followed by a list of suggestions and action items for how you can improve in this particular area. As you go down the list, you can mark the items that you want to work on to make it easy to create an action plan for improvement.

    Overall, the style of the book is very direct and frank. The author has many years of career counseling experience, and it shows. She does not mince words in showing you ways in which you sabotage yourself and your success, and gives specific and actionable steps to overcome these limitations. The author also provides a number of reference materials for "further reading", so that if you have an interest in doing further work in a particular area, you can go to these books for more detailed help and strategies.

    While I was skeptical at first about how much value I would get out of this book, I was pleasantly surprised to find a few things that I had not considered before. It was also helpful to read a number of things that I already knew I wanted to improve. The specific action items following each mistake are a great way to go from knowing where your limitations are to taking immediate steps to improve them. Having finished the book, I found myself going back and taking notes on the items that I wanted to work on. I now have a fairly comprehensive list of things that I want to tackle, and I'll be able to focus on them one at a time.

    Although I really appreciated the value provided by this book, I was also turned off by a few things. As a woman in my late twenties, I felt that a lot of the language in this book smacked of 70s-era feminism. The book also feeds on a lot of women's insecurities, as if being a woman in itself puts you at an unfair disadvantage. I believe that there is a lot to say for the power of femininity, and frankly, advice like "your hair should get increasingly shorter as you get older" is plain ludicrous. (According to this logic, women in their 90s would need to all but shave their heads.) This brings to mind the unflattering images of 80s-era professional manners with masculine haircuts and man-suits. In addition to the feminist message, the tone of the book often came across as somewhat "stuffy" and I had to double-check a couple of times that this book was actually published in the 21st century and not in 1987.

    While the tone of the book prevented me from enjoying it as much as I could have (which is why I did not give it five stars), the advice it delivers is definitely sound and on target, and therefore I would recommend it to any woman interested in building a successful career in business....more info
  • Get this book and treat it as a workplace bible
    Lois Frankel expertly describes and then steers us away from those pesky behaviors we engage in at work that have us look way smaller (and I don't mean in size) than we actually are. For example, offering do someone else's photocopying. Or saying, "I'm sorry," when, in fact, there's nothing to be sorry about. We're so used to saying it that it slips out without notice -- by us, anyway, but not by everyone else. Oh, and laughing at the end of most sentences...what's up with that? So many women actually do that, and it takes away from whatever they've just said. Frankel's book is necessary reading, and it's an easy read -- it's divided into short sections, with one page for the mistake and one page for coaching tips. ...more info
  • For all women wanting to get into Professional work
    I purchased this book after a friend of mine told me about it in 2006. I purchased it in 2007. This has been the best book on how to climb that corporate latter that I want to climb. (However, I need to get my foot in the door of corporate work first, but that is a different story).

    The beginning of the book provides a test for you to take and you must be honest. After you answer all questions you will need to add up all of your scores for each section. You will be lead to read the top 3 or 4 chapters that you need help on most. Some of mine were- Act like a man (or something like that), Say "no" more often, how I act....Things like that.

    Since I have never had a corporate job before-I really don't have experience with these types of jobs. I suppose more women would say "Yes" to everthing that they are asked to do and yes, I can see more men saying "no" to their bosses since men are fearless. I guess women feel that they need to do everything, but by giving in and saying "yes", we hurt outselves! Key: Let someone else do it. You do not need to do it all.

    The culture of any business is important and this book does talk about that a little. I'd give this book at any women wanting to enter in the professional world of work. It really does not apply for those in blue-color or cashier type jobs. ...more info
  • Great tips for getting ahead
    Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office outlines the do's and don'ts of corporate America for women. It's the career version of 'The Rules' with straightforward, no nonsense advice. (You'll most likely want to cry over the 'don'ts' that you commit every day.) After reading this book and applying its principles, I felt more polished, professional and confident...and the job offers followed. ...more info
  • Nice girls...bad CD
    Nice girls dont get the corner office is a big corner of negativity. If you want to feel aweful just give this CD a listen. Lois Frankel put me to sleep. She sounds like the the unseen teacher in the charlie brown series. "Mistake number 6854984742 dont pick your nose the board room...wah wah wah." Terrible. Dont waste your money. Try Tom Hopkins advanced sales survival training CD#2 hilarious, uplifting and helpful to all. ...more info
  • Nice girls don't get the corner office 101
    A great read for executive women and women who want to present themselves well at any career or job....more info
  • From Nice Girl to Leader
    I use this book all the time in my life leadership coaching with women whether they work in corporations or they're entrepreneurs because for women to succeed anywhere they have to grow to overcome their own self-limiting behaviors and beliefs.

    What I love about this book is how clearly the 101 mistakes are organized under 7 broad areas. I am not big on quizzes because they often stop at only giving information. That is not the case here. Instead the author has created a quiz that very easily identifies and ranks an individual woman's 7 areas from strong to weak. Then once a woman identifies the two or three areas she's weakest she can read the chapters and further focus in on which of the mistakes she makes. The coaching tips and simple exercises at the end of each mistake support practice and self-improvement.

    Every time I've used this quiz with clients they have benefited from the clarity and direction. This is one of the best thought out and useful books for self-employed women, managers and executives I have ever seen or used. To step up as leaders of their lives women must get to know and change self-defeating behaviors. Nice Girls can help get them started.

    [...]...more info