In the Editor's Note of Sept./Oct. 2003 WDJ, Dr. Margaret Scarlett introduced the book She Wins, You Win, by Gail Evans (Gotham Books, 2003). I found the title intriguing, and then was given a copy in San Francisco by Dr. Scarlett, as were other members of the AAWD Board of Directors. If you have not devoured your copy yet, I urge you to do so. And please purchase a copy for every woman dentist on your gift list in 2004!
In her first book, Gail Evans, CNN's first female executive vice president, showed women how to get ahead in the workplace by learning the unwritten rules of business that were created by and for men (Play Like a Man, Win Like a Woman). In her latest book, Evans tells women that it isn't enough to understand the men's rules ... women must create their own. And the path to success begins with this single most important rule: Every time a woman succeeds in business, every other woman's chance of succeeding in business increases. Every time a woman fails in business, every other woman's chance of failure increases.
Evans realized that one of the most important elements of the men's game, which was missing from the women's, was support. She divides this easy-to-read handbook into three parts: I. The Woman's Team; II. Team Tips; and III. Challenges.
Under the "Challenges" section was a question commonly asked by women dentists since I have been a member of AAWD. It concerned the problem that occurs between older and younger practitioners. I really liked Evans' ability to look at both aspects of the problem and focus on a solution that put women on top regardless of our age. (Yes, you must read the book to find out!)
Evans summarized her book with a single glorious message: Women are in this together, whether we want to be or not. So you might as well join with enthusiasm. Those of us who don't help each other, hurt each other. Everyone else sees you as part of this team (based on your anatomy). It's time you start seeing yourself that way. Sounds like a good marketing strategy for AAWD, doesn't it?
Following is Evans' final paragraph in the book verbatim:
"This book is one that the men won't want women to read. They know that if women ever stop playing as isolated individuals and start playing as a team, all the rules are going to change. The men also know that when that happens, it's going to be a whole new ball game."
Mary E. Martin, BSDH, DDS, MEd
Dr. Martin currently practices dentistry in Midwest City, Okla., with her husband. She founded the Oklahoma Association of Women Dentists in 1984, and has been recognized in her state as one of "Fifty Women Who Make a Difference" two years in a row.