About the Book
Named to the shortlist for the 2021 Outstanding Works of Literature (OWL) Award in the Women in Business Category
Addressing gender alone won't help women rise to the top.
Although women come from widely diverse backgrounds, they share a common assumption upon entering the workforce: "I have a chance." Along the way, however, they discover that people question their authority, challenge their intelligence, and discount their ideas. And while gender is a common denominator among these women, race and class are often wedges between them.
In Our Separate Ways, Ella Bell Smith and Stella M. Nkomo take an unflinching look at the surprising differences between Black and White women's trials and triumphs on their way to the top. Based on groundbreaking research, the book compares and contrasts the experiences of 120 Black and White female managers in America. Powerful stories bring to life the women's often difficult journeys from childhood to professional success, highlighting the roles that gender, race, and class played in their development.
Now with an updated preface and epilogue, the book provides candid discussions of the continuing challenge of achieving race and gender equality in the midst of deep political and ideological divides. You'll discover how White women have—perhaps unwittingly—aligned themselves more often with White men than with Black women and how systemic racism and biases still exist in organizations. But you’ll also learn what to do to leverage the talents of all women and eliminate systemic racism for good.
Whether you lead an organization or simply want to better understand the dynamics at play in business today, you'll discover provocative ideas for creating a better workplace and encouraging equality for everyone.