Why do so many women fail to achieve their professional goals and earning potential? Why do so many women feel guilty about wanting a fulfilling career? A business psychologist, executive coach and career adviser who has worked with thousands of smart, high-achieving women, Debra Condren, Ph.D., has discovered the true culprit: this time it’s not the men holding women back. This time, women are doing it to themselves because ambition—for women—is still a dirty word.
am-BITCH-ous (Morgan Road Books; December 26, 2006; $23.95) offers every woman a revolutionary perspective and a practical roadmap to reclaim ambition in its most gloriously positive sense. “Wouldn’t it be great if you could be audaciously ambitious and happy at the same time? You can and you will.” Drawing on inspiring stories from her interviews with 500 happily ambitious women, as well as her own professional and personal experiences, Dr. Condren shows how any determined woman can claim the recognition, respect and money she deserves, without feeling guilty and without compromising her integrity. With refreshing bluntness, Dr. Condren makes clear that the rewards of ambition can only be reaped by rejecting our culture’s drill on the importance of putting ambitious goals at the bottom of a woman’s priority pile—to be tended to only after she’s first sacrificed for everyone else—along with refusing to buy into the idea that if she goes after her dreams, she’ll be selfish, bitchy, a bad wife, or a bad mother.
“This is most emphatically not a book about how to be unapologetically bitchy to get what you want. This is a book about redefining your ambition in the face of social sanctions and unapologetically going after all your dreams,” Dr. Condren tells women upfront. “This book will reveal to you that the real way to have a great life is to see your ambition as a virtue—as a part of your value system that you must give equal attention to, along with other priorities you hold dear, including your spouse, children, and friends.”
am-BITCH-ous starts by helping women get a handle on the overt negative messages they have absorbed about being ambitious, the covert negative messages that have filtered in unconsciously and the self-sabotaging behaviors they cause. After gaining awareness of the areas where they’re most prone to holding back or selling themselves short, women will focus on proven, fresh solutions—the same ones Dr. Condren uses with her clients and with 2500 women she’s worked with as the founder and executive director of the Women’s Business Alliance—with the payoff of a meaningful, challenging, rewarding career and a fulfilling personal life.
To lead the way to prosperity and power, Condren maps out eight practical am-BITCH-ous rules for women who wish to be passionate about, dedicated to, and exceptional at their work:
- Be a Contender, which means competing and taking credit for winning.
- Get More Power from Powerful Advice, with tips on creating an advisory board.
- Don’t Be Afraid of Confrontation…sometimes you have to bust the person!
- Make ‘Em Pay, with pointers on knowing and getting what you’re worth.
- Be More Irresponsible to Others…and get comfortable with just saying “no.”
- Be a Power Broker…and protect yourself from attackers and underminers.
- Disable Detractors with honest communication and snappy comebacks.
- Stop the Fraud Police—You Deserve to Be Here…so don’t apologize.
In the final section, women will find lifetime maintenance strategies for tending to their ambitchous dreams over the long-term so that they can dare to be great and to make the contribution they were born to make. Filled with self-assessment quizzes, reality checks and checklists, exercises for developing business savvy and insights from unrepentantly ambitious women, am-BITCH-ous is the ultimate motivational resource for every woman who longs to harmoniously combine professional success with personal satisfaction.