Monday, July 29, 2013

Fail. Change. Love. And Other Advice To New Grads-- From Forbes

It’s no secret that recent crops of college graduates have been more risk averse than some of their predecessors. They’re more likely, for instance, to go for the job they could get rather than the one they want. And who could blame them? The uncertain economy hasn’t given young people much room to explore their passions and try out different ways of working, different ways of being a professional.

 As the dean of a management school, I give students a few parting words as they prepare to walk onto the commencement stage—and into the real world. On those occasions, I don’t feel a need to dwell on the job market and the practical challenges ahead. These they know better than I. They know them all too well.

But there’s another side of this equation. There’s the downside of playing it safe, of not forming the habits and attitudes that will help you stand out, try new things, and innovate. And this too, the graduates—including those embarking on business careers—need to hear.

Dare to be Different.

To be different, you have to give some thought to who you are as a professional. You have to think about your personal brand, your mission, your distinctive way of adding value to the work you do. This is what I call “your gig,” what you’re all about, in the work world.

Read the rest of the article and more from Andy Boynton online:

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

John Wooden's Pyramid of Success

"Success is peace of mind which is a direct result of self-satisfaction in knowing you did your best to become the best you are capable of becoming."- John Wooden

John Wooden coined his own definition of success. By the standards of the Basketball Hall of Fame, his own success was unique. He is the only person in history to be enshrined there twice, once as a player for Purdue University, and again for his performance as coach of the Bruins of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). 

In Coach Wooden's last twelve years as coach, UCLA won ten National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) championships. In the 27 years he led the Bruins, they never had a losing season. Their record of 88 consecutive winning games will probably never be surpassed. 

Among Wooden's players at UCLA were two titans of the game: six-foot-ten Bill Walton, and seven-foot-plus Lew Alcindor, who later became one of the great stars of the NBA under his Muslim name, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar. Despite the presence on his squad of such towering superstars, Coach Wooden always credited his team's success to the spirit of selfless teamwork he inculcated in all his players. "Always think of passing the ball before shooting it," he told them. 

Despite the unparalleled success of his teams in the NCAA tournament, Wooden said his greatest satisfaction came from seeing his players go on to be productive members of society off the court.


Friday, July 12, 2013

Priceless Financial Advice For Recent Graduates- Forbes

If you could rewind your life to graduation from high school or college, what would you have done differently with your money?

Confession: I’m a financial voyeur. For as long as I can remember I’ve been fascinated by the unique relationships people (and especially women) have with their money. So when I was recently asked by my Alma Mater, Wellesley College, to serve as a Financial Fellow in residence and create some unique personal finance programming for students and alums, I jumped at the chance.

One of the most popular events we held was called “Powerful Women & Their Pocketbooks.”  In this session, I asked three VERY successful Wellesley alums (C-suite level, corporate board member, business founder, etc.) what their best and worse financial moves were right out of college.

By design, we did not compare notes before-hand. Alums were from the classes of  ’68, ’73, and ’90 – so spanning various stages in businesses receptivity to women leaders.  What struck me the most was how incredibly similar our best tips (& worst trip ups) were despite very different ages, career choices, and life experiences.

The top three pieces of advice every one of us gave were:
  1. Learn to live within your means right out of the gate – and understand that means your life likely won’t look like mom & dad’s right away.
  2. Bow down and respect the incredible power of compounding – start saving right out of school no matter how hard it hurts & how unpleasant the tradeoffs.
  3. Be an advocate for your own financial security – whether in the workplace or on the home front.
Read more from Forbes online:

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

How should we refer to this July holiday?

 Americans celebrate their independence from England on Thursday. If you want to be truly authentic while barbecuing and watching the fireworks, should you refer to the holiday as “the Fourth of July” or “Independence Day?”

“Independence Day,” or even “Independent Day.” When 18th-century state legislatures planned the first July 4 observances, they didn’t bother to give the day a proper name. “Independence Day,” however, had slightly more currency than “Fourth of July” in contemporary writings. A Royall Tyler poem dating to the late 18th or early 19th century, for example, commands Americans to “squeak the fife and beat the drum, independence day is come!” Tyler also refers to the holiday as “Independent Day,” which was a widely used alternative.

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