So… The Confidence Code by Katty Kay and Claire Shipman sat in the pile of my “to be read” books for months and months. I haven’t heard or read many people talking about it, so the urgency to read it wasn’t there. But it should have been and people should be talking about it! The Confidence Code is such an inspiring read and has thus far received the highest Pop! rating of 4.5. You know when we both agree it has got to be good. – B
Overall Pop Rating (1 to 5 stars, more stars the better we thought it popped!)
B: 4.5. As soon as I started reading The Confidence Code, I started telling every one of my female friends to read it. I enjoyed the way the authors approached the topic and showed in their writing how they got from one part of their research to the other. It was as if we the readers were on the path with them, and they thought about and answered some of the questions I’ve had recently, like how can women use their strengths as communicators and empathizers to succeed.
T: 4.5. I wasn’t sure what to expect with this book, but I found it to be a page turner. It addressed topics that I’d been ruminating about (just ask Becca!) like do you have to be a jerk to get ahead in corporate life? The book was well researched and fact based with a summary at the end with suggestions on how women could actually make changes to develop more confidence.
Why were you drawn to read this book?
B: Another recommendation from my Mom. It’s actually been sitting on my shelf for the last several months. I picked it up recently, read the first page and thought, this is exactly the book I need to read right now.
T: I’m not sure where we found this, but I’m pretty sure Becca did. I’m selfishly always game for books that are encouraging to women so I was curious about this one.
What is one thing that you will take away from this book?
B: I’m thinking we need to rephrase this question as there never seems to be just one thing! One concept that gave me pause is the idea that women have a tendency to take themselves out of the game before it is even played. They mention that if a group of women and men walk into a conference room, and there aren’t enough chairs at the table, women will gravitate to the chairs along the wall while men will sit down right at the table. Um, what?! But in all seriousness, I have been in situations recently where I’ve done something similar. Also, they talked about being authentic, and drawing confidence from the things you are good at, which is hard in this age of comparison when you see other people succeed by doing different things. Just because it works for that person, whether that person is male or female, doesn’t mean it will work for you. As they say, “when confidence emanates from our core, we are at our most powerful.”
T: Multiple things as usual. It resonated with me the quote that “good leadership means being an efficient decision maker.” The point was that hesitating to make decisions is a detriment as a leader regardless of whether you are making the right choice or not. That’s something I struggle with at times. One quote that hit a little too close to home was “Faced with these corporate realities, sometimes we women give up altogether, deciding that we don’t fit in this world and can’t be bothered to put up with it when the toll on our psyches and our families is so high.” I’ve definitely had my moments with this. I am pretty sure I’ve even said it out loud multiple times which is so defeatist. The book supports that the best thing to gain confidence is through action and being authentic. I strive to be more like some of the women they interviewed that they summarized as “genuinely confident women, perhaps genuinely confident people, don’t feel that they have to hide anything.”
Who would you recommend this book to?
B: Every woman! Seriously. To get slightly more specific, any woman who is going through a transition and needs a little bit of inspiration to change and push through, whether that be in their career, with friends or personally.
T: Any woman who struggles at times with feeling confident or who wants to better understand the differences in confidence between men and women and how to navigate those differences.
Has anyone else read this book? We’d love to hear your thoughts! Also, if anyone has any suggestions for our 2016 book club, we are taking suggestions.