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Why Good Girls Don't Get Ahead but Gutsy Girls Do

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Why Good Girls Don't Get Ahead but Gutsy Girls Do

9 Secrets Every Working Woman Must Know

Warner Books,

15 min read
10 take-aways
Text available

What's inside?

Gutsy girls are focused, goal-oriented, good at their work, instinctive, decisive, and willing to break the rules. Good girls are only good.

Editorial Rating



  • Bold
  • Engaging


This is a guidebook for working women who believe that they are being held back in the workplace. A glass ceiling for women is not in place because of male management, according to Kate White. Rather, she maintains, women create their own glass ceiling because of their good-girl personalities. In nine steps, she details how a good girl can become a gutsy girl. Gutsy girls break through the glass ceiling and get what they want from the organization. This is an important book for any woman who wants to rise to upper management in a corporation. Men, too, can learn ways to be more aggressive at work. getAbstract recommends this book for anyone who wants a strong dose of workplace reality.


The Myth of the Good Girl

Good girls grow up with rules. They are told, "Be a good girl," and "Good girls don’t do that." Every time a good girl obeys these rules, she receives positive feedback. This childhood reinforcement leads to clearly identifiable adult work behavior. If you are a good girl at work, you do what you are told, you try to make sure everyone likes you, and you take on as much work as possible. This behavior "undermines your career and prevents you from achieving maximum success." To grab the full range of opportunity, you must strip away your safe, good-girl behavior and become a gutsy girl. You will derive three benefits from this change in your work personality. First, career opportunities will open up dramatically because you are willing to act boldly. Second, you will have more personal time, because you will learn that it is okay to delegate, take shortcuts, and relax. Third, you will feel a sense of relief because the gutsy girl is no longer frozen inside of you. These two personality types have nine contrasting traits:

  1. A good girl follows the rules; a gutsy girl breaks the rules - or makes her own.
  2. A good ...

About the Author

Kate White is the editor-in-chief of Redbook magazine.

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