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The Athena Doctrine: How Women (and the Men Who Think Like Them) Will Rule the Future

3.38  ·  Rating Details  ·  144 Ratings  ·  23 Reviews
Among 64,000 people surveyed in thirteen nations, two-thirds feel the world would be a better place if men thought more like women. This marks a burgeoning global trend away from the winner-takes-all, masculine approach to getting things done. Drawing from interviews at innovative organizations in eighteen nations and at Fortune 500 boardrooms, the authors reveal how men a ...more
Hardcover, 298 pages
Published April 16th 2013 by Jossey-Bass (first published March 1st 2013)
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Dec 15, 2013 rated it really liked it
Disclaimer: While I aim to be unbiased, I received a copy of this for free to review.

I have to give the authors credit here - I disagreed with a fundamental principal of the book, and yet I still immensely enjoyed it. Loosely speaking, the Athena Doctrine is the theory that women and the men that think like woman will lead the way in to a brighter and better future where people work together for a common good.

Unfortunately, I'm not sure if I disagree with the classifications of which traits are
Cathy Griffith
Jun 01, 2013 Cathy Griffith rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Quite interesting. The authors identify a list of social traits that are usually/traditionally associated with women as opposed to a set of traits usually/traditionally associated with men. Then they look at current economic development & governance in a wide range of countries & cultures which embody the feminine methods & aims (Athena Doctrine) to underscore their assertion that the world will be a better, healthier, more equitable place as "feminine thinking" gains adoption over m ...more
Lane Hannah
Jun 26, 2013 Lane Hannah rated it really liked it
I'm reading a lot about inequality lately. What I liked about this book is the real-life stories that breathe life into some of the more academic theories about where we stand now in a world increasingly disillusioned by big business and government involvement - often run in a typically masculine or ego-driven style.
At times the Athena Doctrine is heartwarming in its bringing together of stories of people making a difference in the world. Drawing together research results that demonstrate a cha
Feb 12, 2014 Cheri rated it did not like it
The publishers of this book should be ashamed. Not only is the research on which the "Athena Doctrine" is supposedly founded awful from a scientific perspective, the presentation of the data is also poor and inappropriate for the intended audience. How do you have a book about feminine values in the workplace and only show male viewpoints on the graphs? As the case study section began, none of the supposed Athena principles of leadership that were outlined in chapter one seemed to ever be mentio ...more
Apr 04, 2014 Lauren rated it did not like it
Shelves: book-club
Got half way through it and don't care for it enough to finish it. While many of the international projects or business models were interesting- I didn't agree with their premise that they were somehow inherently "feminine". Even the parts that were interesting, were anecdotal, and thus did not contain enough "meat" to really glean much from.
Cindi Kerr
Jul 11, 2013 Cindi Kerr rated it really liked it
Well researched. Thought provoking. Not your usual "women are better at leading than men" diatribe. The book takes a world-view of the "what got us into this won't get us out of it" premise. Not nearly as dry as I'd expected, this book is easy to read and follow. Not just for MBA's but for anyone who is raising children to thrive in the future.
Sue Parker
Mar 11, 2016 Sue Parker rated it liked it
A good book but not exceptional. As I read further into the book, I found it to be less about distinguishing the masculine vs feminine behaviours, and more about individuals who took advantage of technology and social media to address an immediate local problem, and improve quality of life for small groups of people, that are outlined in the case studies. If you're short on time, flip to the back of the book and read the appendix, it's a good synopsis.
Sep 25, 2015 Jim rated it liked it

Should have been a 10-page article. Good ideas about how leadership must evolve in today's world, but the book is inflated with 200 pages of tangential anecdotes. Beyond that, the "feminine" label is an adequate way to describe the traits that are important in leadership today, but the authors completely miss the trends (technology + economic + social) that have brought about the change.
Joshua Degreiff
Sep 16, 2015 Joshua Degreiff rated it really liked it
First time I just rating 4/5 stars, because I was looking more extended research, psychology and scientific not first chapter and just skip to examples around the world how men need to apply women thinking. I have to give him credit finally someone is trying to open mind of people who are thinking man is doing the right thing always.
Theodore Kinni
Jan 20, 2016 Theodore Kinni rated it it was ok
I don't really buy these books that say that we need more feminine energy to solve the world's problems. I think we do need less aggression and more collaboration, less telling and more listening, etc. - but associating that shift with gender seems like a lot of baloney.
Christina Boyle
Nov 09, 2015 Christina Boyle rated it it was ok
I got bored. It is difficult to sustain interest on microfinance and other related topics.
Jun 16, 2013 Chi-Chi rated it it was amazing
This book was a very interesting read. I agree totally that the world needs more of a balance between masculine and feminine principles. I thought the authors did a fine job of presenting examples where cooperation, empathy, and other attributes that are considered feminine lead to a kinder, gentler world where everyone's need can be more closely met.

I had one minor complaint about how female African beekeepers were described. I thought it was patronizing and silly. But otherwise, this was a go
Jun 04, 2014 Grace rated it it was ok
I appreciate the intention behind this book, but had an issue with the way that it was presented. By making character traits inherently sexual (i.e. male or female), it makes it harder to "break the mold". I liked the highlight they gave to the gender-neutral preschool in Sweden, but the book essentially contradicted that by making character traits inherently related to one's gender. Again - appreciate the intention, but not the execution.
Merany Eldridge
Mar 29, 2014 Merany Eldridge rated it it was ok
I'm 75% done with this book and I'm giving myself permission to give up on it. The research behind the book's premise seems poorly executed. It's mostly just a series of fluffy company profiles which are more about values of collaboration and connectivity, then feminine values. It seems to me like these have more to do with the internet and social media than women.
Aug 12, 2013 Heather rated it it was ok
Shelves: nonfiction
Disappointing. After the introduction, which laid out a somewhat questionable research strategy and outlined the thesis that the authors went on to attempt to prove, the book seemed to consist mostly of feel-good community action stories. Doubtless it took a lot of work to collect these from all over the globe, but it was less rigorous and analytical than I expected. Just didn't deliver as promised.
Mar 27, 2014 Rahnia rated it liked it
The introduction was fascinating, but the narratives throughout the book didn't quite deliver. The narratives were not clearly connected to the thesis, and I question whether organization by geographic region was an efficient way to manage the material. Relating each chapter (and its stories) to a specific trait that was identified in the introduction would've been more powerful.
Aug 31, 2013 Laurie rated it did not like it
Shelves: abandoned
Possibly had some interesting and inspiring stories about small companies doing business differently, but I think they forced it into the wrong framework. The idea of masculine and feminine characteristics in leadership was not convincing or well-supported and the authors immediately lost me by relying on really weak correlations to prove their point in the intro. Not recommended.
Jun 24, 2013 Rachel rated it it was ok
Shelves: business-finance
I'm not sure that the book proves (or even remembers) its own premise. There were interesting stories and ideas that made one think about, and hope for, the future of business in a positive light. It reminded me of a series of Readers' Digest articles.
Arun Andhavarapu
Jun 15, 2014 Arun Andhavarapu rated it liked it
Shelves: business
Interesting examples but the main assertion of the book is hard to make in any cogent way thst stickd after you are done reading, i.e. long term impact is negligible.
Aug 04, 2013 Veronica rated it really liked it
very interesting as it went through advances that women are making in different nations around the world
Sep 28, 2013 Lindsey rated it really liked it
Thought-provoking and fun to read. Definitely a good conversation starter.
Nov 20, 2013 Ally rated it it was amazing
It makes you think, offers good advice, and is concisely and well-written.
Mills College Library
305.42 G388 2013
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