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Things We Love: The Working Woman's Handbook

July 30, 2019

I’ll be honest: when I first read about the New York Times’ new series called The Working Woman’s Handbook, I was slightly off-put. The title gave me 1970s “isn’t it cute that she wants a career?” vibes. Hard pass. 

But then, a writer I follow and admire, Elaine Welteroth, wrote a piece for the series called How to Hustle Without Burning Out. Reading it opened me up to the WWH series; it was clearly more than the inspirational “how to ~*~do it all~*~” pieces that often serve to guilt women into doing more more more instead of delegating and releasing some pressure off of ourselves. 

I ventured deeper into the Working Woman’s Handbook and found this guide to overcoming imposter syndrome - an affliction that I and many of my female friends have talked about dealing with. 

Given that we’re in the midst of the #MeToo era, the handbook also touches on dealing with sexual harassment at work, a reality I’m grateful not to deal with at an all-female company, but that many, many women are forced to reckon with. 

There are also pieces about negotiating salary, handling failure, and how introverts can survive office life — check, check, and check. I’ve been continually impressed with the Handbook’s coverage of issues that working women—whether they’re in a white or blue collar role—face. 

My small complaint about the series is that, overall, it doesn’t focus on the ways that race intersects with gender. Several of the pieces do make mention of race and class, but I’d love to see more of that. 

Overall, though, I’d recommend this series to my pals of all genders: for advice, for guidance, for a sense of how the other half lives. 

—Kate Moser Miller