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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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Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office: 101 Unconscious Mistakes Women Make That Sabotage Their Careers

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3.69 of 5 stars 3.69  ·  rating details  ·  4,257 ratings  ·  342 reviews
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 sabo ...more
Paperback, 288 pages
Published September 1st 2010 by Business Plus (first published January 1st 2004)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Laurie
This book had some useful advice, although I think it was over-generalized and really meant for women working at large "corporate America" type companies. As a female who just recently started a career at a small (but very successful) family-owned business, I don't feel like all of these rules necessarily apply to my situation.
But I had larger issues with this book.

First, I found that the author seems to use men's behavior as the standard for how the workplace should function. She frequently s
...more
Gwen
As cliched as it sounds, this book was a revelation to me. As a young feminist who is just starting out in her career, I was relatively certain that the professional world would have changed since Frankel wrote her book and that acting in a professional (yet reserved) fashion would be sufficient in today's workplace. Clearly, I was mistaken (although not as much as I thought).

Frankel first has the reader take a 49 question quiz, which is able to determine which of the eight areas are both your s
...more
Wallace
Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office 101 by Lois P. Frankel is a book that all women should receive upon graduation from college. It is amazing what we, the female gender, do to undermine ourselves without realizing it. Many of us, who come from homes that were supportive and definitely didn't pigeonhold us into the subservient female role, would never imagine how much we have picked up from the social cues and trends around us. Though, until recently, I would have not realized that I suffered ...more
Tia
I could not make it through this book because it infuriated me so much.

To begin, the book is horribly sexist, insisting that women should change their behavior because "you don't see men doing it," "it accents your femininity," etc. Over and over again, the author implies that the feminine is somehow lesser and that masculinity is the ideal that everyone should strive for. While fine for someone who just wants to play the game, it's an insult to those who want to change it; the problem in the wo
...more
Kressel Housman
This is the first book I read from the bibliography of Anne Kreamer's It's Always Personal: Navigating Emotion in the New Workplace, and I found it much more skills-based and practical. The author's main theme is, "Quit being a girl," by which she means to toot your own horn and stand up for yourself because high quality work alone won't get you noticed and promoted. The corporate world is prejudiced against girls and can't envision them beyond the secretarial pool. Women, in contrast, get ahead ...more
MB (What she read)
Easy to read and some quite useful tips.

(It would be nice if someday, we, as a society, ever get to a time when men aren't advantaged in business by their sex and women didn't have to make themselves over just to get ahead.)
Jaime
I just finished reading this book in an effort to teach myself how to stop doing all of those little things that sabotage the advancement of my career. I'm not currently looking for a new job (even though I should be) but I'd still like to work on improving my skills and stop downplaying my abilities.

Things I already know: I act nice to get people on my side, meanwhile, forgetting about my own needs because I want everyone to like me. I also say "I'm sorry" a lot and don't know how to toot my ow
...more
Anoud
Starting from the naïve socialization until sex discrimination, most women are way too far from achieving satisfactory successful career life. Lois Frankel addresses in this amazing book, Nice Girls Don't Get The Corner Office, 101 unconscious mistakes working women do that sabotage their careers. All of these mistakes are results of being socialized with stereotypical norms and roles. Lois's main argument is that women themselves are the ones who carry out the whole responsibility. If they hap ...more
Stephanie
Reading "Nice Girls" back in 2004 was a bit of a shock to me - an unpleasant one. So many of the negative behaviors Lois Frankel describes were things I did in the office on a regular basis. These behaviors were so ingrained in me: don't be too aggressive, apologize profusely for any misdeed, be grateful for any crumb tossed my way, and I sat with my foot folded under me ALL the time. I do agree with Frankel that it's difficult for women to get ahead by always being a "nice girl." Her book struc ...more
Joanna
Another book with a tacky title that I have bypassed every time I've seen it. But browsing in the library one day I decided to give it a try and I'm glad I did. I always knew that I was a typical girl in finding it difficult to negotiate money, but I thought that was it. After reading through this book (which doesn't take long as you can easily skip over irrelevant sections), I have realized that I actually am making a bunch of 'mistakes' at work that are not benefiting my career. This book help ...more
Kathrin
This was an interesting read and while I don't agree to all the points the author made I still have the impression of getting some valuable insights. However, since I don't work in a big company I believe that some parts of the book just didn't address me. There was definitely a point when I felt like 'I've heard that one before' but the author remained a little vague on what to do. But then, I don't expect someone to provide me all the answers.

The book was a good place to start and I'll most l
...more
Courtney
All women should be forced to read this book. Traits that are inherent to us as women, when allowed to drive the way we function at work, allow others to walk all over us while we ask for more and thank them for doing it.

Even if you think you're a strong, independent woman (which I like to believe I am), this book will point out important things that you do at the office that help keep your pay at less that of your male counterparts and help you get looked over every time there's a round of pro
...more
Heather
Self-help books aren't really my thing and the tone in this book is often condescending, like she's talking to people who are emotionally adolescents. That said, some of her points are great and no matter how much education in women's studies you or I or anyone has, the socialization we received as girls continues to cripple us in adult life. It's inescapable.

I'm not exactly a shrinking violet but I recognized myself in some of her examples. Recommended for women in industries dominated by men a
...more
Marcella
I need to clear out my library of unread books and am doing so by reading them. This one was given to me at a woman's leadership conference and so far falling short of the other book "Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman."

UPDATE
It was okay. Wouldn't recommend as there are definitely better books out there, but she said some true things and has some okay tips. I probably make the majority of the mistakes, but am not as bothered. The alternative feels unaccessable and not someone I'd like to work for
...more
Megan Hewins
I had an epiphany-like moment over and over again when Frankel points out that when people shame a woman for unladylike behavior, it's not because there is such a shameful thing as unladylike behavior, it's because it's the easiest and most effective means of getting whatever it is they want out of you.

Because we've been so conditioned to be pleasing to others, accusing a woman of behaving in an unpleasing manner is like an automatic shut off button that manipulative people use against us. Accu
...more
Aura
Written by top career coach L.P.Frankel, ‘101 mistakes’ aims to guide women away from the ‘act like a girl’ stereotypes taught to them as young ladies, which according to the author they carry onto womanhood.

The book begins with a self-assessment questionnaire to help you identify what your strengths and weakness are, so you can concentrate more on your weakness. Each section includes a case study and bullet pointed summaries to help you deal with each problem.

I liked that Frankel kept everythin
...more
Hilary
This came highly recommended from a blog I read, and I can see why. Thankfully it's not all new to me because an excellent friend of mine has mastered these skills and has been coaching me for some time. (What can I say? I'm a slow learner.)

In essence, it's showing how your normal life skills and instincts (be nice, don't make waves, don't be pushy) have to be tweaked while you're at work if you're in a corporate environment or working primarily with men. (Otherwise many of these may not apply,
...more
Stephanie
Some great tips for women about how to stop undermining their success with subtle/subconscious habits (think smiling too much, talking too softly, tolerating innappropriate comments, letting other take credit for ideas, tilting head when talking, and lack of professional networking).

A lot of the advice in the book seemed obvious to me (I wouldn't let someone present something as "their idea" when I had obviously brought it up in the past) but there was some good advice to be gleaned from this b
...more
CP
This book has sound advice for women (and men) who want to improve their communication skills, professionalism and their ability to earn respect at work (and even outside of work). There are tips that should be common-sense such as always giving a solid handshake and tips that you don't always hear such as what it means when you tip your head as others are speaking. One tip that spoke volumes to me was why women tend to speak quickly when giving speeches and how we need to own it, slow down, tak ...more
Sara Smith
This book was great. People get the impression from the title that moving away from being a nice girl means being a b****. Which is exactly why this book is so necessary. This book is about taking actions to behave as a confident woman should behave in the workplace and overcoming cultural signals we've been given about the ways others might want us behave as we've grown up. Highly recommend!
Melissa
This book definitely has some useful advice. It brought to light some of my pitfalls, most of which I was aware of and others that made me realize "yeah, I'm guilty of that". There were some of the tips that I felt were a little outdated and irrelevant for today but overall the book is good for identifying areas of struggle that can potentially hold you back from getting a promotion or as simple as being treated the way you deserve to be treated at work. I would recommend this book!
Amanda Oehlert
A well-written book that provides guidance for anyone in the workplace about common mistakes that we all make, though women are typically more likely to make more of these mistakes than men are. There are a wide variety of topics across all aspects of working, from appearance to negotiating. There aren't any hard and fast rules to follow - it's more about figuring out how you currently present yourself and act at work to how you could better present yourself and act. Frankel advocates for playin ...more
Michelle
I didn't always agree with what Frankel said but thought provoking nonetheless. I sure am tired of being work Mom for sure.
Debi
I received a copy for Netgallery and the publisher for honest review

NICE GIRLS STILL DON'T GET THE CORNER OFFICE is the book I needed 20 years ago! I'm from a long line of Southern women who are terminally nice. My career was in a male dominated industry where I was told "women don't do well". It seemed the boys "ate my lunch" at every turn, but I was successful despite the good ole boy's club. I worked more hours while the boys never answered their phones nights and weekends. I worked harder, b
...more
Teena in Toronto
This was interesting an book because it was focused on women and the mistakes we make in the workplace, whether you are an admin assistant or a VP.

To start, there is an assessment to see what you should work on ... my scores were pretty even for all the categories. My overall score was in the middle and indicated ... Fine-tuning is the name of your game! Although you often engage in behaviours worthy of a winning woman, there are times when you don't get your due because you get caught up in nic
...more
Jean
Why I liked it: The book opens with a self-assessment. It was a great opportunity to get a quick read on what areas I need to focus on while weeding out areas that aren't as critical for me to spend tie with. I appreciate the author's respect for my time. I also appreciated that the following suggestions were short and to the point and gave suggestions for additional growth, should that be an area I want to read more.

At the same time, what I like was also what I didn't like - I would have appre
...more
Vivian
This book was exciting at first, but then turn to uncomfortable. First, It made me feel that being a Girl itself is a guilt, acting like a girl, thinking like a girl is not recommended in work place. So basically this book tell people "how to act like a man" because high positions are mostly held by man. If you "don't see a man do this, you should not do this" (!!!?!) . Second, it provide too many no right- no wrong recommend for both gender, but still emphasize only female worker often do this ...more
Rachel Smalter Hall
I loved this and I hated this. Lois P. Frankel is a total pragmatist, which can be tough for an idealist like me to swallow. Throughout "Nice Girls" she argues that women who want to get ahead in business have to learn to play by the rules created by white men in corporate America. We have to learn to live and play within that structure.

Yet I've always held onto this starry-eyed idea that we should be able to create lives for ourselves that honor who we are and what we value. And this is probabl
...more
Melanie
I've just never been a particular fan of self-help books. My general belief is that they are written to be marketed and salable to a wide audience, and are therefore rarely applicable to any individual and their situation. It requires a person with a high degree of self-awareness, intelligence, and observation to be able to glean which aspects of the self-help guide are truly serviceable in their situation and for their personality.

Some of Frankel's points were good, and others just do not appl
...more
mysticbookworm
I do have a few issues with this book, mostly it's the dress for success bit. I feel like, we have to constantly pander to what men in our society want...and maybe not just men, but everyone. The reason I say this is that we have to wear our hair and do our make-up a certain way so that it is pleasing, polished, and professional(which are far too many P's for me thanks). At the end of the day, did my appearance get me certain tasks accomplished faster, better, etc.? Or was it my skills? I'd like ...more
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CMU SWE Book Club: Fall 2012: Nice Girls Don't Get the Corner Office 3 7 Nov 14, 2012 10:42AM  
  • Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman: What Men Know About Success that Women Need to Learn
  • Ask For It: How Women Can Use the Power of Negotiation to Get What They Really Want
  • How Remarkable Women Lead: The Breakthrough Model for Work and Life
  • Brag!: The Art of Tooting Your Own Horn without Blowing It
  • Basic Black: The Essential Guide for Getting Ahead at Work (and in Life)
  • Knowing Your Value: Women, Money, and Getting What You're Worth
  • Getting from College to Career: 90 Things to Do Before You Join the Real World
  • Hardball for Women
  • I Shouldn't Be Telling You This: Success Secrets Every Gutsy Girl Should Know
  • The Well-Spoken Woman: Your Guide to Looking and Sounding Your Best
  • The Go-Getter Girl's Guide: Get What You Want in Work and Life (and Look Great While You're at It)
  • How To Say It for Women
  • I'd Rather Be in Charge: A Legendary Business Leader's Roadmap for Achieving Pride, Power, and Joy at Work
  • Brazen Careerist: The New Rules for Success
  • 20-Something, 20-Everything: A Quarter-Life Woman's Guide to Balance and Direction
  • The Secret Handshake: Mastering the Politics of the Business Inner Circle
  • The Best Advice I Ever Got: Lessons from Extraordinary Lives
  • Secrets of Six-Figure Women: Surprising Strategies to Up Your Earnings and Change Your Life
Dr. Lois Frankel, President of Corporate Coaching International, a Pasadena, California consulting firm, literally wrote the book on coaching people to succeed in businesses large and small around the globe. Her books Nice Girls Don’t Get The Corner Office and Nice Girls Don’t Get Rich are international bestsellers translated into over twenty-five languages worldwide. Stop Sabotaging Your Career, ...more
More about Lois P. Frankel...
Nice Girls Don't Get Rich: 75 Avoidable Mistakes Women Make with Money See Jane Lead: 99 Ways for Women to Take Charge at Work Nice Girls Just Don't Get It: 99 Ways to Win the Respect You Deserve, the Success You've Earned, and the Life You Want Nice Girls Don't Get... (Box Set) Stop Sabotaging Your Career: 8 Proven Strategies to Succeed--in Spite of Yourself

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“Prepare for every negotiation... 1) Focus on Outcomes. What is it that you want to walk away with? Being as specific as possible also increases the likelihood of negotiation success. 2) Support your desired outcome with data that points to its reasonableness. 3) Writing down your key points in advance - and practicing them - enables you to stay focused on what's most important and avoid going off on tangents. 4) Err on the side of asking for more, rather than less [of what you really want]. 5) Be willing to walk away.” 0 likes
“Understand that it is unlikely that you will change the size of the playing field to suit your needs. Playing your game at the edge can help to stretch the boundaries, but if it’s too narrowly defined for you, start looking for a bigger field.” 0 likes
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