Archive for March, 2011

The Cardigans

No, this isn’t a post about the 90’s pop band.  I actually found a couple cardigan sweaters I like and wanted to share.  The first is lightweight linen cardigan from Banana Republic.

Photo courtesy of BR

This cardigan provides a nice alternative to a spring jacket on those brisk mornings, but warm afternoons after you leave the office.  However, since winter won’t end that point might be moot.  Regardless, it will go well with jeans, gray slacks and khakis.

Banana is charging $89.50, and you can get free shipping based on some recent deals they have.  The only color offered is black, but it is available in tall sizes.

Additional Info:

  • Traditional 5-button closure
  • 100% linen
  • Hand wash cold

Link here:  http://tinyurl.com/4bxkx5k

The second is a Hartford Cotton Blend Cardigan I came across browsing Mr Porter. (mrporter.com).

Photo from Mr Porter

A little more casual, this cardigan will go great with jeans on the weekend.  You can match it with a button down, t-shirt or blazer.  This cardigan will set you back a little more at $200 and is only available in gray.

Find out more here:  http://tinyurl.com/4vhrlrt

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Success

The best $34 my wife and I spend each year is on a subscription to Success magazine.  I picked this gem up about a year ago and haven’t stopped reading since.

Their motto is “What Achievers Read” and it’s hard to disagree since every issue is packed with powerful and insightful information in some of the following areas:

  • Business
  • Relationships
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Sales
  • Wealth
  • Leadership

Success

For example, the April 2011 issue had articles on Seth Godin, Duke coach Mike Kryzewski, and Howard Schultz (Starbucks CEO).  Each month focuses on a theme (entrepreneurship, sales, leadership, family) and piles on the information.

Every issue includes a CD with in-depth interviews with two or three key people featured in that issue with Publisher Darren Hardy.

What I love about Success is that it’s inclusive of all areas of your life, not just career.  Therefore, they highlight people from all walks of life.  It’s not only a great way to learn ideas and concepts, but from people in areas you may know nothing about.

Success is something I look forward to each month to help generate new ideas, stay positive and keep improving.  It’s definitely worth your time to pick up an issue and see if you like it.

You can find out more at success.com.

-JM

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John Wooden’s Creed for Life

Legendary UCLA basketball coach John Wooden used to keep this simple creed in his wallet since the age of 12:

Making the Most of Oneself

Be true to yourself.

Make each day your masterpiece.

Help others.

Drink deeply from good books.

Make friendship a fine art.

Build shelter against a rainy day.

Pray for guidance and give thanks for your

blessings every day.

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Thank You Cards

If you don’t have a stack of these in your desk, you are seriously dropping the ball.  Thank You cards are an effective way to express gratitude and leave a positive impression with friends, family and colleagues.

Most people understand you should send a thank you card after a job interview, although surprisingly some don’t.   One buddy used to adamantly argue that a thank you email was enough.  He was also unemployed for more than a year (not that I’m blaming it on not sending thank you cards).  However, if two identical candidates applied for a job, interviewed well and one sent a thank you card while the other didn’t – who would you hire?

Why Sending An Email Isn’t Enough

It’s lazy for starters.  Besides, a lot of people get between 100-150 emails a day.  Who needs one more?  Especially if it’s sandwiched between annoying emails from a colleague in Asia or a last-minute request from your boss.  The note can get lost in the email shuffle, which lessens the impact.

Real Life Example

Last week, as part of a continuing education initiative program at my company, I attended two one-hour sessions on accounting and budgeting.  Four people presented in total ranging from VP’s to Directors.  A woman from HR organized the work shop.

All five got thank you cards last Friday.  Yesterday, I passed the Director of Finance who said this:

“Hey, thanks for the card.  That was really nice and completely unexpected.”

That’s because I doubt anyone else sent one.  Now If I ever mess up an accrual estimate or need a favor, this guy is 10x more likely to help me out.  As for the presenters that don’t know me, they will certainly have a favorable impression should we cross paths again.

Finally, send thank you cards right away.  While it’s still better than not sending one at all, a bigger impact is made if you’re first.

Do the unexpected.  Stand out from the crowd.  Sometimes it only takes five minutes.

-JM

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7 Habits of Highly Effective People

7 Habits of Highly Effective People is on my to read list.  I read an overview of Stephen Covey’s book on QuickMBA.com, which is a pretty good site.  Here’s a great takeaway from the article:

“The point is that we see things not as they are, but as we are conditioned to see them.  Once we understand the importance of our past conditioning, we can experience a paradigm shift in the way we see things.  To make large changes in our lives, we must work on the basic paradigms through which we see the world.”

Read the rest of the article here:  http://tinyurl.com/8oqr9z

Have a great Friday.

-JM

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Gadgets Ruining Your Sleep?

Perhaps this is why I’ve been sleeping so poorly lately.

http://tinyurl.com/623j3d6

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Twitter Was Act One

Interesting article in Vanity Fair with Jack Dorsey, inventor of Twitter:

http://www.vanityfair.com/business/features/2011/04/jack-dorsey-201104

Jack Dorsey in NYC

Takeaways: Successful people are generally optimists.  Follow your passion.  Managers must explicitly communicate with their team.

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