Momazonians, Glossier Play, Work Wives: Broadsheet March 5
Good morning, Broadsheet readers! The Royal Family hits the block button on sexist comments, Amazon employees campaign for backup childcare, and we examine what it means to have a “work wife.” Have a terrific Tuesday.
Work wives. Do you have a “work wife?” If not, maybe you should.
This morning, Fortune published an excerpt from Work Wife: The Power of Female Friendship to Drive Successful Businesses, a new book from Erica Cerulo and Claire Mazur, the co-founders behind Of a Kind, an e-commerce startup that was acquired by Bed, Bath & Beyond in 2015.
In it, the pair talk about navigating the challenges that arise when you go into business with one of your best friends. (They first met as undergrads at University of Chicago.) And while they acknowledge the risks that come with such an endeavor—the constant discussion of money issues, the strain of startup hours, and all the other factors that have the potential to blow up a friendship—they found that being in it together brought not stress, but rather “immense, intense comfort.”
More from the co-founders:
"We also walked into this knowing we saw each other as equals; there was no power dynamic to contend with, and we trusted that would remain a constant. At some point, after enough soul-crushing investor meetings and awkward interviews with job candidates, the looming sense that we could walk out of this venture short a business and a bud faded away. Once we’d put enough hours, years, and life into Of a Kind, it was clear that if something didn’t work out with the business, our relationship would survive, just as it had plenty of other lows. We were in this together, even if ‘this’ ceased to exist."
The pair also note that female co-founders or other women who band together to help each other succeed at work are helping break down outdated stereotypes about “mean girls” and catty female co-workers who live to stab each other in the back.
Ultimately, they conclude: "'Work wife,' a term spawned from ‘office wife’— which itself dates back to the 1930s, when it was used by men to describe an especially high-functioning secretary—has more recently been co-opted to describe a combination of personal and professional bondedness and healthy, supportive closeness among women. It’s a dynamic that requires an in-this-together attitude and approach that’s viable in any business setting with right-minded people, and in our experience, it’s a game-changing one."
Readers, do you have a work wife—or maybe even work wives? I’d love to hear about those relationships and how they’ve impacted your careers. Drop me a note at Kristen.Bellstrom@fortune.com. (We may use your response in a future Broadsheet.) Fortune
ALSO IN THE HEADLINES
• Shelving the scoop. The New Yorker's Jane Mayer has a new investigative piece on the rise of the "Fox News White House" and the channel's switch from partisanship to propaganda. The story describes the details around how Fox News in 2016 had proof of President Trump's relationship with Stormy Daniels and the catch-and-kill deal with the National Enquirer, but quashed the story because "Rupert [Murdoch] wants Donald Trump to win," as an editor told reporter Diana Falzone. Falzone was demoted and has sued the network. The New Yorker
• Ukraine's Yulia. One European election to follow: the race for president of Ukraine. Yulia Tymoshenko, a former prime minister of Ukraine, has been imprisoned by political opponents and was the target of a campaign to discredit her by Paul Manafort. She's a divisive figure and a household name in Ukraine—and is currently trailing in third place in the presidential race. It's impossible to fully explain her complicated history and political stances here, but this article featuring a rare interview does it well. Reuters
• Rei(g)ning it in. The Royal Family is hitting the block button. Kensington Palace released new social media guidelines for users interacting with its accounts, and said it will report and block users who post sexist comments about Meghan Markle and Kate Middleton and racist comments about Meghan. CNN
• Momazonians on message. Over at Amazon, employees are making a case to Jeff Bezos to instate better benefits—specifically, backup childcare—for working parents. The "Momazonians" make the point that Amazon's big tech competitors already offer these daycare benefits and that Amazon is losing out on talent by failing to offer something similar. Bloomberg
MOVERS AND SHAKERS: Kelly Skalicky was named CEO of Stearns Bank. KKR appointed Kate Richdale as member and head of strategy and business development in Asia Pacific.
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT
• What kind of pay gap? Google completed an analysis of its pay and came to a surprising conclusion: many male employees were technically being underpaid. The situation is complicated and involves women being hired into the company at a lower level than they should be based on their qualifications. These allegations are included in a class-action lawsuit against Google alleging pay inequities affecting women at the tech giant. Google moved to address the wage inequality it found by putting $9.7 million into salary increases, mostly for men. New York Times
• The big debut. After a long build-up, Emily Weiss's Glossier has unveiled its second brand, Glossier Play. Turns out, Glossier Play is a dialed-up, more colorful version of Glossier. "If Glossier is your everyday essentials, [Play] is your going-out makeup," Weiss tells Allure. Allure
• Mr. Clean-Up. Uber's chief legal officer, Tony West, is one of the executives tasked with cleaning up Uber and leading the charge on improving reporting around—and stopping—sexual assault committed during Uber rides. Fun fact from this New York Times profile as Uber gets ready to go public: he's also Kamala Harris's brother-in-law. New York Times
• An age-old question. The writer Tomas Chamorro-Premuzic has a new book coming out with the eye-catching title Why Do So Many Incompetent Men Become Leaders? The answer, this excerpt reveals, is that narcissists often become leaders—and men are more likely to be narcissists. Fast Company
ON MY RADAR
Be careful how you talk about the women running for president. Girls are listening Washington Post
The rise and fall of the man cave Vox
The CEO who realized olive oil could be Instagrammable The Cut
Virgin Atlantic drops mandatory makeup for female cabin crew The Guardian