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Lean Out: The Truth About Women, Power, and the Workplace

Lean Out: The Truth About Women, Power, and the Workplace

by Marissa Orr


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Girl gangs reigning terror at Facebook, narcissistic overlords at Google . . . this is the backdrop of Lean Out, which takes readers on the journey of Marissa Orr, a single mom of three trying to find success in her fifteen-year career at the world’s top tech giants. Orr delivers an ambitious attempt to answer the critical question: What have we gotten wrong about women at work?

“This book is a must-read for insights on the impact that reversing systemic gender biases can have on creating more diverse, healthier workplaces for both women and men.”

—Joanne Harrell, Senior Director, USA Citizenship, Microsoft

“This book will make you think differently about what it will take for women to succeed at the highest levels in American business.”

—Rishad Tobaccowala, Chief Growth Officer, Publicis Groupe

Lean Out offers a new and refreshingly candid perspective on what it’s really like for today’s corporate underdogs. Based on both in-depth research and personal experiences, Orr punctures a gaping hole in today’s feminist rhetoric and sews it back up with compelling new arguments for the reasons more women don’t make it to the top and how companies can better incentivize women by actually listening to what they have to say and by rewarding the traits that make them successful.

In Lean Out, Orr uncovers:

  • Why our pursuit to close the gender gap has come at the expense of female well-being.
  • The need to redefine success and change the way corporations choose their leaders.
  • The way most career advice books targeting professional women seek to change their behavior rather than the system.
  • Why modern feminism has failed to make any progress on its goals for equality.

More than fifty years since the passage of the Equal Pay Act, the wage gap still hovers at 80 percent, and only 5 percent of CEOs in the Fortune 500 are women. Today, rising up the ranks in many companies still often means cutthroat, win-at-all-costs tactics, where being the loudest voice in the room is more important than being the person with the best ideas for moving the company forward. Not surprisingly, most women don’t want to play this game.

An everyday working woman with a sardonic sense of humor, Orr is an endearing antihero who captures the voice for a new generation of women at work. Lean Out presents a revolutionary path forward, to change the life trajectories of women in the corporate world and beyond.

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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781595557568
Publisher: HarperCollins Leadership
Publication date: 06/11/2019
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 1,173,013
Product dimensions: 5.90(w) x 9.00(h) x 1.10(d)

About the Author

Marissa Orr spent 15 years working at today’s top tech giants, Google and Facebook. She has conducted talks for thousands of people in the US, Europe, and Asia-Pacific, at companies and universities such as Google, Twitter, Pace University, New School, American Express, and more. Originally from Miami, Orr received her Masters degree in Decision and Information Sciences from the University of Florida.

Table of Contents

Author's Note ix

Prologue: A Series of Fortunate Events xi

Introduction xxvii

Part I

Chapter 1 Silencing the Lambs 3

Chapter 2 Free to Be Just Like Me 19

Chapter 3 The Confidence Gap 35

Chapter 4 Putting the Men in Mentor 55

Chapter 5 School vs. Work 69

Chapter 6 #SorryNotSorry 83

Part II

Chapter 7 The Power Reward 105

Chapter 8 It's the System, Stupid! 117

Part III

Chapter 9 A New Way Forward 135

Chapter 10 Weil-Being vs. Winning 165

Acknowledgments 185

Notes 189

Index 201

About the Author 206

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