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The Male Factor by Shaunti Feldhahn

The Male Factor by Shaunti Feldhahn When I first heard about The Male Factor, I was a bit skeptical. It kinda bugged me to think that there’s something holding women back in business. We’re in 2010 and we should be past that, right? Well, we should be but we’re really not.

Feldhahn interviewed a large number of men and created a pretty comprehensive survey to find out how women are perceived in the workplace. The results may just surprise you.

A lot of men and women just have different ways of working. That’s not to say that every man does the same thing or every woman does. But over time you start to notice patterns. And those patterns are what Feldhahn addresses.

The author emphasizes that women should just be aware of how they are being perceived in the workplace — especially when you work with a large group of men. For instance, if you show any emotion, you will most likely be seen as irrational (unable to think clearly at that point). That was tough for me to read, because I sometimes have an emotional reaction whether I want to or not. As in, I have no control over it no matter how hard I try. I know it has hindered me a time or two.

The advice in the book is not telling women to change who they are or to try and act more like they think a man would. The bigger point is to be aware of your actions in the workplace and how they are perceived.

The version of the book I read also had advice for women of faith, with advice from other women who already have experience with these questions (especially if you work in a faith-based company, which can actually be a little more understanding of the work-style differences between men and women, according to the author).

If you’ve ever wondered why the workplace “rules” seem frustrating or are holding you back, I actually think you can learn a few things from this book. Again, the emphasis isn’t to change yourself, but to just be more aware of how others perceive you. I’ve learned myself how empowering it can be just to be “in the know.”

This book was provided for review by the WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group.

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