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Formats
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2020
  • 139781612543307
  • 168 pages
  • $22.95
Ebook Details
  • 09/2020
  • 139781612543307 B08DHJRQKC
  • 188 pages
  • $22.95
Audio Details
  • 02/2021
  • 139781612543307 B08DHJRQKC
  • 188 pages
  • $22
The B Words; 13 Words Women Must Navigate for Success

Adult; Business & Personal Finance; (Market)

Utilizing her own experiences from more than 20 years in the workplace as well as those of other women, Kagerer identifies 13 “B Words” to establish and explain the internal and external challenges facing women today and provides practical strategies for handling these different problems. Navigating the workforce as a woman can feel like making your way through a minefield. Step too far in one direction, and suddenly, you’re considered bossy and overbearing and difficult to work with. Too far in the other, and you lose your power and voice. If you try to stay in the middle, you could still be contributing to generations’ worth of a stagnant mindset that has hindered women from reaching true equality. Kagerer explores how obstacles can manifest themselves during various stages of life and creates a map to help women identify what holds them back and what they can do to propel themselves forward. Rather than preaching “work-life balance,” Kagerer challenges readers to achieve “self-defined success,” a life intentionally designed your own way.
Plot/Idea: 7 out of 10
Originality: 6 out of 10
Prose: 9 out of 10
Character/Execution: 9 out of 10
Overall: 7.75 out of 10

Assessment:

Idea: Kagerer’s The B Words is a soundly structured, well-researched book of business, financial, and life advice directed at women navigating the opportunities, challenges, and barriers of today’s workplace. 

Prose: Kagerer’s prose is direct without feeling clinical. The book’s layout is clear and simple, never calling attention to itself – perfect for imparting advice to the reader.

Originality: The emphasis on personal anecdotes separates this book from others in the genre, though the work does not always sufficiently elevate well-worn material.

Character/Execution: By pulling testimony from a number of women, Kagerer adds a much-needed personal element to the financial sphere. The testimonials help accentuate the different paths women have taken in the workplace and address a wide variety of possible issues.

Date Submitted: November 23, 2020

Reviews
In this practical, inviting guide, Kagerer, an executive and speaker specializing in risk management who has often been “the only woman in the room,” lays out clear-eyed career advice for women. Her aim: to encourage the next generation of women professionals with frank advice and discussion about issues women persistently face in the workplace (bullying, condescending nicknames like “kiddo,” propositions, being judged on voice and appearance). Crucially, Kagerer also focuses on the “limiting beliefs” that she argues often hold women back, including still-pervasive myths about women being less analytical than men or being better suited for clerical or HR jobs than management.

While her subject is urgent and often complex, Kagerer adopts the encouraging tone of a coach, emphasizing action steps and real-world strategies to help readers break through inhibiting barriers, face their inner critic, or understand unconscious biases in individuals and organizations. Kagerer has arranged her material into 13 chapters, each titled for a B word: beliefs, balance, babes, babies. (An initial chapter covering how individuals can and should arrive at their own definitions of success boasts no alliterative title.) The chapters’ organizational logic isn’t always clear, and readers in a hurry might not intuit that Kagerer’s clarifying discussion of the rules of handshakes comes deep in the chapter titles “Babes.”

The book at times is playful—”Bitches” and “Badasses” get their own chapters—but Kagerer’s suggestions are nuanced and thoughtful, often illustrated by case studies of professional women or in well-told anecdotes from the author’s own life. Kagerer takes care to honor and address a diverse array of possible readers, including those whose idea of balance includes a traditional family and those who elect not to have children. The B Words is uncommonly helpful and candid.

Takeaway: This guide to success in the workplace for women offers frank, encouraging advice.

Great for fans of: Alicia Menendez’s The Likeability Trap, Katty Kay and Claire Shipman’s The Confidence Code.

Production grades
Cover: B
Design and typography: B
Illustrations: N/A
Editing: A-
Marketing copy: A

Kagerer, executive vice president of risk management for a general contracting firm, offers a pragmatic guide for “young women, midcareer women, and women nearing retirement.” Kagerer shares her experience serving in leadership positions, and her counsel is organized into 13 thematic chapters concerning a topic that starts with the letter B. “Babies” covers family concerns and offers suggestions to women who do and don’t want children (things come back to “you must know yourself”). “Beliefs” aims to reframe women’s “limiting beliefs” about money, “Budgets” encourages women to take monetary decisions into their own hands, and “Bullies” surveys toxic workplace behavior (“Seventy percent of bullies are male bosses,” she writes). There’s no shortage of practical advice—avoiding self-deprecating humor as it gives “permission to dismiss” women, for example—and interviews with other successful women reinforce Kagerer’s ideas. Readers will appreciate Kagerer’s encouragement in dealing with conflict: “By getting to know yourself, you become more confident in how you react to things you can’t control.” Women having trouble navigating the workplace will find this a valuable resource. (Self-published)
Lone Star Indie Review

“Fear and power are at the heart of keeping things the same”

Women have made huge strides in gaining workplace equality, but that ongoing journey is still riddled with outdated opinions, cultural biases, and self-limitations. While women are now employed in all industries, often with unequal pay, many traditionally male-dominated companies, such as construction, still emanate that exclusive masculine club mentality and often only hire a single obligatory female.

In The B Words, Tricia Kagerer presents thirteen words that highlight the challenges and pitfalls that women still face, in both the workplace and society in general. Women have always been associated with the maternal roles of nurturer and caregiver, and while they have now breached other industries, closed doors and closed minds still prevail, with some limitations coming from the women themselves. For example, Kagerer points out that many women have a low sense of self-worth or believe the expectation that they are naturally inept at handling finances and business.

Harassment is another factor that many women of all ages and in all environments face. Kagerer indicates that the recent #MeToo and #TimesUp movements have galvanized discussions about women’s right to speak out against sexual harassment and bullying, but these behaviors will remain until both men and women of influence hear and act accordingly. While women are the target audience for this book, men can learn something as well, in terms of their own biases and behaviors that contribute to holding women back or showing disrespect.

The B Words is not only for young women entering the workforce who are not yet experienced in navigating male-dominated workplaces and handling unwanted attention and unfair assumptions. Women at all stages of life can relate to and benefit from this collection of scenarios, personal stories, breakthroughs, and advice that help create self-awareness and validate life choices.

Each “B word” smoothly feeds into the next and highlights character traits, limitations, and opportunities to help women achieve success, both on the job and at home. Every entry in The B Words is brief yet thorough in outlining issues and suggestions, with periodic notations for sources and directions for further research and information at the end of the book. Kagerer’s well-written entries cover many aspects of a woman’s professional and personal journey, such as evaluating old beliefs that stem from parental opinions and views, understanding and feeling comfortable with budgets and other financial aspects, recognizing biases in themselves and others, and embracing their positive bitch and badass qualities to create a life of bravery and achievement.

Not every woman will recognize all the B words in her past or current situations, but every word is valuable to help women perceive the constraints and catalysts for change. No door should be closed to a woman, even if that ‘door’ is an attitude that causes people to exclude or demean in any way. Knowledge and courage are stressed repeatedly throughout each topic because women continue to fight for inclusion and acceptance and must arm themselves with the right attitude and awareness to achieve confidence and success in their homes and in their chosen careers.

Tricia Kagerer, who lives in Plano, Texas, has achieved great success in the construction industry and understands firsthand the challenges of working and succeeding in a male-dominated profession. Kagerer now strives to smooth the way for other women through public speaking and The B Words.

 

Formats
Hardcover Details
  • 09/2020
  • 139781612543307
  • 168 pages
  • $22.95
Ebook Details
  • 09/2020
  • 139781612543307 B08DHJRQKC
  • 188 pages
  • $22.95
Audio Details
  • 02/2021
  • 139781612543307 B08DHJRQKC
  • 188 pages
  • $22

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