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I'd Rather Be in Charge: A Legendary Business Leaders Roadmap for Achieving Pride, Power, and Joy at Work Hardcover – January 31, 2012
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“Charlotte is the greatest master of knowledge I have ever met. This book will help working women remove their self-imposed blocks and become as great as they are meant to be.”
—Suze Orman, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“Charlotte Beers is: Captivating. Persuasive. Charming. Disarming. Eloquent. Substantive. Successful. Modest. Strategic. Capable. Determined. Convincing. Enough said. Read this book to learn how to be in charge.”
—Martha Stewart, New York Times bestselling author
"A role model and champion to all women who want to make the most of their careers, Beers offers useful guidance on how to seize opportunities, be influential, and shape events."
“Reading I’d Rather Be in Charge, I found myself reflecting on my own way of teaching and leading. Charlotte candidly shares with us how she found her own unique path to influence in her exceptional journey in Corporate America and gives us precious advice on how to find ours. I will draw on some of her lessons in my Power and Influence class this season.”
—Julie Battilana, Associate Professor of Business Administration, Harvard Business School
“Charlotte Beers goes straight for the jugular with tales from her meteoric career in advertising. But her true gift is ultimately the ability to teach us all how to be both memorable and persuasive in our own communications. A must read that combines wit and wisdom in equal measure.”
—Ted Bell, New York Times bestselling author
"The book is a great read. I found it to be very inspirational, even for someone who has been at this business for as long as I have. I think all women, at any point in their work life journey, will experience a transformational epiphany by reading and engaging in the challenges Charlotte Beers puts forth in I'd Rather Be In Charge."
—Mary Baglivo, CEO New York and Chairman & CEO Americas, Saatchi and Saatchi
About the Author
next position as chairman/CEO of Ogilvy & Mather Worldwide, a multinational advertising agency. Harvard Business School still teaches their bestselling case study on leadership entitled “Charlotte Beers at Ogilvy.”
Top customer reviews
I'd Rather Be in Charge offers a solid treatment of the subject of women and power in the workplace, addressing many of the issues that may stand between women and positions of authority. Some of the issues raised by the author include:
* approval-seeking ("It's good to enjoy applause, but not to need it");
* the tendency by women to merge their work and home identities (Beers emphasises the need to distinguish between the two--and to be comfortable with the distinction, which the author presents as liberating);
* emphasising performance over presentation, expecting that all the hard work will be noticed eventually .
By identifying these issues and providing ample examples that demonstrate how the author or other women dealt with them (effectively or not so much), Beers helps the reader become aware of her automatic responses to a variety workplace situations. In fact, self-knowledge as a tool for change is a cross-cutting theme of Beers' book.
Additionally, the author attempts to connect many of these emotional issues to the messages that girls receive while growing up. While certainly laudable, this attempt would benefit from being more grounded in psychological literature.
On a positive side, the continual reiteration of the theme of power and "being in charge" in the book goes a long way toward making the female reader more comfortable with the subject--and with her desire to achieve greater power at work and in business.
Finally, as a recent (2012) publication, the book offers a fresh perspective on the subject of women and power--and this sets it apart from the glass-ceiling-oriented books of the previous decade, which tended to emphasise external factors impeding women's upward movement in the workplace, while underemphasising women's personal agency.
Despite the clear strengths of Charlotte Beers' book, it is somewhat repetitive, as the author seems to exhaust herself midway through the narrative. The book would definitely benefit from extensive editorial pruning. Otherwise, its important message (which is that women can--and should--address their emotional hangups around positions of power in the workplace) may easily get lost behind its repetitive prose.
This book gives you a look into the world of business women you cannot get any other way. Too often we look at successful professional women and see nothing but perfection. But this book made me realize that these women face the same challenges all working women do. Everyone can learn so much by how these women deal with these challenges.
I felt the need to write down a lot of the observations that Charlotte shared. I predict that many of her thoughts will be quoted again and again ("It's good to enjoy applause, but not to need it"..".Leaders invent the future"..."Change has an expiration date").
Everyone should be grateful that she was willing to offer so much of what she has learned. This pioneer did more than just blaze a trail...she charted a course to make it easier for others to follow.
Years from now this will be right next to "Ogilvy on Advertising."