Friday, October 05, 2012

Weekend Reading: The More Work Stuff Edition

As I discussed yesterday, it was an intense week. So I don't have many links for you, because I didn't spend much time reading things. What I do have is work-related.

First up, a sort of depressing article in Forbes about how moderately successful women like me tend to assume that the pay gap isn't in play in our lives, but it probably is.

Then, an article from the Harvard Business Review about how to encourage deep thinking at work. This was also sort of depressing, because based on reading it I can only conclude that modern work environments are usually set up to discourage deep thinking.

Finally, I have a book recommendation for anyone experiencing career-related angst. Or just career-related uncertainty: So Good They Can't Ignore You, by Cal Newport. I've linked to his Study Hacks blog before. I'll probably write a full book review soon- maybe even next week if the waters stay calm enough at work and home. It isn't a perfect career advice book, but there are some interesting ideas and I think the advice he gives is good, just nowhere near complete. The basic premise is that we should all stop worrying about what our "passion" is and just focus on getting really good at something valuable, and then we'll be able to trade those skills for the sort of life we want. Like I said- some good ideas, but also some limitations to them. If you read it now, you can discuss it with me next week! It isn't that long and is a fairly quick read.

And now I'm going to go collapse into a semi-catatonic state on my sofa. Or perhaps assemble goody bags for Petunia's birthday party on Sunday. One or the other.

5 comments:

  1. From the deep thinking post:
    Make certain you have at least four consecutive, uninterrupted hours a day dedicated to the three priorities you identified.

    AHAHAHAHAHAHA! Yeah, right. If I could have uninterrupted 4-hour-blocks per day, I would not need advice on how to engage in deep thought. I personally can have a large block of time like that only once a week and only because I am fiercely protective of my one no-meeting day per week. All other days, my time is quite fragmented, no matter how hard I try to consolidate it; it's just what the job is.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah, I know. I'm lucky if I can get 2 hours uninterrupted work time. But then, I'm a project manager, and that part of my job is to organize other people's work and fix their problems. So it isn't such a problem. I miss the days when I could get lost in a problem, though.

      Delete
  2. I don't know if you read the Times, but this article on productivity vs. face-time made me think of you... http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/07/business/measure-results-not-hours-to-improve-work-efficiency.html?hp

    (Like you, I am a very productive worker, but I've come to see that some of my goof-off time at work is actually necessary for my productivity when actually working. I couldn't work at my "productive pace" for 8 hours a day, every day.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I saw that article, but thanks for the link!

      There is no way I could go at full-strength productivity for 8 hours straight. I don't think anyone can. Luckily, I usually have some easy tasks that I can handle when I need a break from the more intense things. And I am a big believer in taking short breaks.

      Delete
  3. mom2boy8:47 AM

    "The basic premise is that we should all stop worrying about what our "passion" is and just focus on getting really good at something valuable, and then we'll be able to trade those skills for the sort of life we want." That was my whole reason for going to law school. I just think I should have picked a different "trade" school to learn a more valuable/more in demand skill.

    ReplyDelete

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