Which is why I was HELLA FREAKIN’ EXCITED when an advance copy arrived at The Everygirl office and immediately dived right into all that millennial pink goodness. Here’s a snippet of what I learned and loved most about the book — and why you should pick one up like right now, deal?
It’s built on the premise of community over competition — and practices what it preaches
Reading WorkParty is like being at a mini Create & Cultivate conference. Johnson is open and refreshingly honest throughout — on everything from elevator pitching to firing — and there’s an entire chapter full of insights from other incredible women making waves in their respective industries. You can feel how much Johnson has been shaped by the women that surround her and why creating a destination for female community became a huge part of her career and vision.
At one point she says, “Our most valuable asset in the game is each other, building each other up and pushing each other forward, not down.”
What a beautiful, important, necessary sentiment. In the book, Johnson briefly touches on how fast female-owned businesses are growing — and yet, they only receive 2% of total venture capital funding. What the fresh hell?! This (shocking) stat is only part of the reason why supporting other women is the key to our success, but it truly illustrates the costs of a lack of community for female entrepreneurs and business owners and interns and employees and every woman in between.
It transcends genre and touches on career trajectories, imposter syndrome, sexism, soulmates, “having it all,” and way more
I was not prepared for how comprehensive this book ended up being — at one point, Johnson talks through meeting her now husband on Tinder and how singleness factored into her own career journey. I loved this foray into the intersection of your personal life and your career — whether you’re starting your own business or working your way up the corporate ladder or forging a new path, what’s going on behind the scenes can make a huge difference. And can I get a slow clap for THIS:
“‘How are you still single?’ is a question I never want to hear asked of another woman ever again. We are not defined by our relationship status. We define ourselves.”
Johnson also dives into creating your own tight-knit community and how each of the players in said community — think work besties, mentors, ride or die friends — can affect your day to day work and your career goals.
It gets REAL about the nitty-gritty of running a business
Too often, I see well-meaning advice that only scratches the surface of what I’m looking for. It’s important to start with those big-picture ideas, but it’s so special when you stumble across guidance that gets specific and illuminates problems you could face day in and day out or strategies you’ll use for the most mundane — but critical — situations that will pop up.
Johnson dives into the particulars with refreshing honesty. She talks about times when you might need to stretch the truth and how that can be a “strategic power play” for your business. She gets into how to beware of slippery language in contracts or NDAs, the potential pitfalls of business partnerships and how to protect yourself, and why you should never accept a first offer. She does her own due diligence by providing comprehensive, accurate, and clarifying information and illustrating how that information has impacted her own career trajectory and why it’s important to know. It’s the pairing of this nitty-gritty with her bold statements (like: “You can teach business but you can’t teach vision”) that make WorkParty such an essential tool for women in business.
It’s like talking to your best friend, mentor, and spirit guide all at once
Early on in WorkParty, Johnson is talking about the beginning of her career — moving to LA, navigating being laid off, starting her first business venture. She tells a quick anecdote about taking a client to Soho House (a very ~fancy~ establishment) and having her credit card declined when she went to pay. I love this anecdote SO MUCH. It’s incredibly real — who hasn’t been in a situation where they have to deal with feeling like they don’t belong — and then the universe decides to kick you while you’re down?
It was snippets of this personality and humanness throughout the book (another favorite is when Johnson mentions her dog is named “Noah Wiley”) that make it enjoyable and commiseratory and inspirational to read. So what are you waiting for?! Go get it already.