Getting Even: Questions for Discussion
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1. Before reading the book, did you think that the wage gap was closing? What do you think now? What do you think are the reasons for the wage gap?
2. What were some of the most surprising facts you learned about the American workplace while reading Getting Even?
3. How many women in your group have personally experienced unfair or unequal treatment -- bias in hiring, promotions, or pay; unfair treatment when you got pregnant or had a child; being shunted out of "men's work" or into "women's work" (whether blatantly or subtly); or sexual harassment? How did it change their career or hold them back?
4. What are you and other women you know not able to afford in your daily life because you earn 23 cents less than a man?
5. Working women's qualifications have essentially caught up with men's, yet sex discrimination persists. Remember the story about Sandra Day O'Connor, who graduated at the top of her law class only to be offered secretarial work at the best law firms? Take a moment to discuss examples you know from your own experience or friends who have faced stereotyping at work. How much did stereotyping cost them or you?
6. From single women to working mothers, civil-service employees to CEOs, Getting Even
introduces a wide range of characters that have fought to get even. With which women did you identify? How did their stories resonate for you?
7. Through case studies, research, and the author's own professional experience, Getting Even
illustrates that taking action can yield tremendous results. What were the most inspiring lessons you took from the women professors at MIT, the female workers at Publix and Home Depot, the state of Minnesota, or the changes at Mitsubishi?
8. Have you ever negotiated a pay raise? What was the experience like? Were you successful?
9. What women do you know who have successfully negotiated to be paid and treated fairly at work? Why do you think were they successful? Note: You may even choose to submit your stories to www.wageproject.org.
10. Is there anyone among you -- whether you are striving to get ahead in your career or you are in a management position with the opportunity to make change -- who wants to start his or her own WAGE group? Have you looked at the Web site ww.wageproject.org to find out how to start a wage club or where to join one that already exists?
11. How can your group work to apply Getting Even's
suggestions to your region? Will you benchmark a company, write letters to the editor, or take on some other task? Have you checked the Web site to see whose ideas might be useful for you? Do you have any creative suggestions of your own for women who are striving for -- and are entitled to -- equal pay?