Book Review, 0420 UTBJ, Vol. 33, No. 2. 50

AuthorBy Brigitte Gawenda Kimichik JD and J. R. Tomlinson Reviewed by Natalya Ling Ritter
PositionVol. 33 2 Pg. 50

Book Review

Vol. 33 No. 2 Pg. 50

Utah Bar Journal

April, 2020

March, 2020

Play Nice: Playground Rules for Respect in the Workplace

By Brigitte Gawenda Kimichik JD and J. R. Tomlinson Reviewed by Natalya "Ling" Ritter

While the #MeToo movement has brought the pervasiveness of sexual misconduct to the forefront of public awareness and discourse, it remains the case that many continue to feel unequipped to confidently and effectively address instances of such behavior that may arise in their own lives. The trepidation and discomfort that surrounds the issue of where and how to draw a line in the sand can be further compounded by the complex dynamics of the workplace, an environment that is both heavily regulated by behavioral policies and politics and nevertheless rife with sexual harassment and other forms of sex discrimination.

In this respect, the legal profession is regrettably closer to the rule than the exception. In 2018, the American Bar Association and American Lawyer conducted a study of the 350 largest law firms in the United States. The survey results revealed that 49% of women and 6% of men reported having been subjected to "unwanted sexual contact," while 74% of women and 8% of men reported having experienced "demeaning communications." Statistics like these provide context for why law is "one of the five fields with the highest reports of sexual harassment."[1] Given this state of affairs, the insights and recommendations in Play Nice: Playground Rules for Respect in the Workplace may be of particular relevance and utility to members of the legal community.

In the book, authors JR Tomlinson, a real estate broker, and Brigitte Gawenda Kimichik, a lawyer, aim to put forth clear and comprehensible principles, strategies, and practices that men and women can employ to reduce inappropriate behavior in the workplace and cultivate healthy and productive working relationships. To this end, Tomlinson and Kimichik propose the application of "playground rules" to evaluate and guide conduct in the "sandbox" of the workplace, or the space in which "men and women work, collaborate, receive mentorship, develop ideas and products, and create and complete projects and where the success of any I business is ultimately measured." Following this line of reasoning, the authors encourage readers to reference childhood standards like, "Respect the playground and its players" and, "No bullying or intimidation allowed" to...

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