Citation for Book: Polk, B. & Chotas, M.E. (2014). Power through partnership: How women lead better together. Oakland, CA: Berrett-Koehler Publishers, Inc.
Recommended by: Kerry FIerke, Ed.D., University of Minnesota College of Pharmacy
Star Rating (1-5): 3 (liked it)
The book Power through partnership: How women lead better together, Polk and Chotas describe the differences between men and women as partners. More importantly, there aren’t many women business partner role models to show the way. The authors describe several benefits of healthy female partnerships — flexibility, confidence, freedom, steady support, mutual accountability and happiness. There are stories of other women who have navigated the partnership realm.
According to Polk and Chotas “the intense give- and take of partnership is a natural fit for the interpersonal, collaborative leadership skills women so often possess and tend to undervalue rather than appreciating them for the meaningful tools they are” (34). When looking for partners, there are three qualities 1) complementary skills, talents, and interests; 2) shared values; and 3) compatibility. These were the most consistent qualities found in the partners interviewed for the research.
The book also covers areas of decision making, risk taking, and leveraging conflict amongst partners. It explains how women can find their own creativity outside of the partnership (known as the rubber band theory). The authors share ways that one can take advantage of having a partner “freedom to be yourself, the incredible support, the confidence, the equity and power that can result through it, and the ability to operationalize big goals, knowing there are at least two accountable partners to keep track and do the work.”
Power through partnership shares perspectives on partnerships through real-life examples. Stories from women who have navigated the partnership realm as artists, musicians, business owners, non profit, and other various examples. These stories highlight the positive experiences and challenges that can take place with today’s demands on women, including ways to conduct them. The book provides a start of a foundation on how to begin the process of partnerships, an example of women working together.