Summary

When Linda Babcock asked why so many male graduate students were teaching their own courses and most female students were assigned as assistants, her dean said: "More men ask. The women just don't ask." It turns out that whether they want higher salaries or more help at home, women often find it hard to ask. Sometimes they don't know that change is possible--they don't know that they can ask. Sometimes they fear that asking may damage a relationship. And sometimes they don't ask because they've learned that society can react badly to women asserting their own needs and desires.
By looking at the barriers holding women back and the social forces constraining them, Women Don't Ask shows women how to reframe their interactions and more accurately evaluate their opportunities. It teaches them how to ask for what they want in ways that feel comfortable and possible, taking into account the impact of asking on their relationships. And it teaches all of us how to recognize the ways in which our institutions, child-rearing practices, and unspoken assumptions perpetuate inequalities--inequalities that are not only fundamentally unfair but also inefficient and economically unsound. With women's progress toward full economic and social equality stalled, women's lives becoming increasingly complex, and the structures of businesses changing, the ability to negotiate is no longer a luxury but a necessity.
Drawing on research in psychology, sociology, economics, and organizational behavior as well as dozens of interviews with men and women from all walks of life, Women Don't Ask is the first book to identify the dramatic difference between men and women in their propensity to negotiate for what they want. It tells women how to ask, and why they should.
©2003 Linda Babcock and Sara Laschever (P)2012 Audible, Inc.
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
4 out of 5 stars
By Jason on 12-02-14

A Motivating Read!

Would you listen to Women Don't Ask again? Why?

I would not listen to this book again only because I felt it was very repetitive. I did, however, bookmark some points I will most likely revisit in the future.

What was the most compelling aspect of this narrative?

The scientific research and studies that prove how women are paid less and expected to be paid less. It really encouraged me to ask more for what I want in all aspects of my life without being defensive, but understanding that just because it is expected for me to accept less, does not mean that I have to do so.

Which scene was your favorite?

The whole book had the same effect for me.

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

I was really moved when hearing the stories of different women that either benefited from asking or were too afraid to ask for what they wanted and ended up settling for less.

Any additional comments?

This book is really motivating. I purchased it when I started the interview process for a new job. I wanted to make sure I knew to how to negotiate since I was very nervous about the entire topic. I received some really good ideas and was able to negotiate my offer from a 7% increase to a 9% increase. I felt I would not have had the courage to do so without this book! I only gave it 4 stars because it was a bit too repetitive and the narration had a complaining tone at times. Other than that a great read!

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

5 out of 5 stars
By snuffanie on 13-07-15

Worth the read!

This book should be mandatory for all humans. It describes the problem (that women do not negotiate for themselves nearly as often as men do, offers potential explanations for the reasons why this is the current state of the world, and describes the consequences that it has on the world. Many scientific studies and experiments are referenced, as well as many (non-scientific) anecdotes. It does a great job of making its case, and inspired me to negotiate more for myself in my life. It helped give me the confidence to negotiate a 42% raise and a new job offer for myself. The book does not go much into strategies for negotiating, but I plan to read Linda Babcock's next book, which promises to go into more detail on this.

A great read, and an important one. For both women and men.

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4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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