Dear Businesslady

Shoulder pads too tight? Forgot where you put your baby in your quest to have it all? Ask a Businesslady, and she will provide.

  1. Okay, folks, clearly I’m doing something a little different with this, my final column in this amazing space we all love so much. How could I let it be Businesslady as Usual during such a strange and transitional period?

  2. I've finally gotten a job that fits my background pretty well, is stable, and pays decently. I've been working toward getting a job in this field for a few years, but now that I've finally got it, I'm afraid it doesn't fit me. I feel like someone more extroverted would be better suited to the job. Also, I'm finding it quite directionless and unstructured. Worst of all, I'm bored out of my mind.

  3. Even if you’re not afflicted with Must Always Make Everyone Like Me Syndrome (which I definitely suffer from), anyone trying to move forward in their career is going to feel a certain pressure to agreeably take on as much work as they’re capable of doing. The line between “happy to help out” and “being a doormat” is often both fine and blurry.

  4. I've been at my job for two and a half years but I’m about to leave to move out of state. A few weeks ago, I found out from a female coworker that a male coworker of ours, Sam, has been sexually harassing almost all the women in my office for at least a year.

  5. You don’t have to stick it out indefinitely in an environment where explosive rage is the norm. While you’re there you might as well treat it like bootcamp, where you can learn to inoculate yourself against taking things too personally, but you might also consider following in your former coworkers’ footsteps and developing an exit strategy of your own.

  6. "...Well for starters, if I were able to accurately adjudicate “Is this just some weird gender thing???” I would be so busy fixing misogyny forever that I wouldn’t have any time for this column."

  7. Friendships and work relationships can be a bad combination even when everyone’s on their best behavior—and what you have here is the rare trifecta of romantic relationship + work relationship + third-party friendship, all in the unstable context of a brand-new business. If you were writing to me four months ago, I might not have said “what a terrible idea,” but I’d have advised you to tread very carefully. But now that you’re in the…

  8. Dear Businesslady, I started a job about a year ago at a small, woman-centered non-profit organization. My boss, the executive director ("ED"), is a few years older than me. We're alike in many ways and get along fine, but there seems to be a class/income divide coloring our interactions, and I need help in navigating it. I grew up in a solidly middle-class home where I didn't lack for much but money wasn't something ever

  9. Dear Aunt Acid and Businesslady,  I'm writing to both of you as my question is both professional and deeply personal. One of my coworkers is my age, but she has a much more senior role. She is sort-of-not-really my boss but she is also clearly interested in finding a work friend. To this end, she asks me numerous personal questions that are not entirely appropriate for our relationship. While I have no problem not answering many…

  10. Dear Businesslady, I work in a small office (like we-don't-have-any-HR-department small). My co-worker, who is my age (30), is an alcoholic. He used to be a really intense one -- like fucking-up-all-the-time, mystery-sick-days, smelling-like-a-distillery, positively-purple-and-about-to-pass-out-in-meetings kind of intense. Then he was sent on a mandatory leave of absence by the management, for detox. He came back sober, but flash forward a year and he's back to drinking at work on the regular. He's not as extreme

  11. Email us questions at, subject line “businesslady.” Previous installments can be found here. Greetings, Toasties! Dear Businesslady has been around for long enough that I’ve accrued a robust backlog of unanswered letters, and a lot of them present issues that seem to have pretty straightforward solutions. Leaving them unpublished feels like a violation of my advice-giver mandate—and it’s starting to make me feel guilty. (You know that thing when an old friend…

  12. Email us questions at, subject line “businesslady.” Previous installments can be found here. Dear Businesslady, I have a situation at work that is stressing me the heck out! I've been an associate at my current firm for about three years now. It's a great place to work and I think I'm fairly good at my job. When I first started, I worked most closely with one of the partners, let's call her

  13. Email us questions at, subject line “businesslady.” Previous installments can be found here. Dear Businesslady, Should I stay with a stable, rewarding part-time job in the field I hope to get into or leave it to pursue greener (and more fun) pastures? Some context: I am 21 and will be graduating with my bachelor's degree this June. I am currently working at a part-time job in my college town I…

  14. Email us questions at, subject line “businesslady.” Previous installments can be found here.

    Dear Businesslady,

    I am set to graduate on the Annual Dean’s List in June. I will have a B.A. my major being Interdisciplinary Arts & Sciences: Politics, Philosophy, & Economics, with a double major in IAS: Law & Policy. These are rather open ended, more general-skills degrees. I can research and write well, and I

  15. Email us questions at, subject line “businesslady.” Previous installments can be found here. Dear Businesslady, I work in a small office that has seen a lot of turnover in the past 8 months. Half the staff has moved on to other jobs and we're still working on filling some of the open positions. I have become the most senior staff, which is scary because I have been on the job for less