April Book Review

Apr 13, 2016 · Lorrie Pellack

Reshma?Saujani came into prominence as a U.S. Congressional candidate (for New York in 2010) and the founder of Girls who Code, a national nonprofit organization working to close the gender gap in technology and prepare young women for jobs of the future.? She was on the ISU campus in January 2016 as a keynote speaker for the Program for Women in Science and Engineering 30th Anniversary.

She has a very readable and engaging writing style.?I?m not an activist, have absolutely no political pretensions, and tend to dislike radical feminism?but the book's?introduction sucked me in as she tells her story in a very personable, everyday manner.?Her ultimate goal/dream is one that many can deeply connect with ? ?to move people to action and bring people together? to create positive change with a lasting impact.

Women Who Don?t Wait in Line is technically classified as a leadership guidebook for women professionals, but it is much more than that.?Saujani?s examples are all successful women, and she aims to redefine feminism; however, she is also advocating leadership by example, sponsorship, taking risks, and embracing failures.?One of her underlying themes is building and relying on good support networks.?Saujani encourages setting ambitious goals, discarding preconceived notions, and being fearless in aiming for success ? so much so that the first half of the book is applicable to anyone interested in becoming successful, regardless of gender or race.?The last half of the book covers many women?s issues such as pay equity, closing the STEM gap, women?s reproductive health services, and workplace policies for women.

Overall, Saujani is ?unapologetically ambitious? and encourages ?boldly charting your own course ? personally and professionally? which is clearly at odds with traditional ?woman?s place? beliefs as well as etiquette in business and politics.?She argues that ?aversion to risk and failure is the final hurdle holding women back in the workplace? and focuses on successful ways to get past those obstacles.

The book is available in the Parks Library Leisure Collection, call number?HD6054 S38 2013.

Saujani, R. (2013).?Women Who Don?t Wait in Line:? Break the Mold, Lead the Way.?Boston: New Harvest, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt.