Posts

BIGG Success Logo boxed

Review: The Answers

By Bigg Success Staff
December, 06 2007

Bigg Book Review

The Answers: All the Office Questions You Never Dared to Ask

Book by Lucy Kellaway

Lucy Kellaway is the “agony aunt” for the Financial Times. Her column, published every Monday, offers down-to-earth advice. Each week, she publishes an answer to a reader’s question, along with the question to be discussed the following week. That gives her readers time to offer their own suggestions to the questioner. Sometimes they’re brutally honest; at other times, they’re incredibly warm.

Now she’s compiled some of the most interesting situations submitted by her readers into a book called “The Answers: All the Office Question You Never Dared to Ask”. It’s a relatively easy read that you’ll find informative and thought-provoking.

If you’re looking for theory, you’re in the wrong place. This book gets to the down-and-dirty problems we all have from time to time. Kellaway has chosen questions about a variety of situations. Some won’t pertain to you, but we think you’ll find many interesting dilemmas.

You’ll learn about dealing with bosses, subordinates, and peers. At its core, this book is about people and cultural changes. More women in the workplace means more gender issues, including office romance. Technology creates its own challenges, like hitting “send” before you thought about it.

Reality TV is hot, because it plays to people’s voyeuristic tendency and makes them feel better about themselves by seeing some other pitiful creature. In this book, Kellaway highlights real-world experiences that you can learn from. They’re not planned, arranged, or rehearsed. It’s not about ratings – it’s just great advice!

BIGG Success Logo boxed

Review: Geek Gap

By Bigg Success Staff
November, 25 2007

Bigg Book Review

The Geek Gap: Why Business And Technology Professionals Don’t Understand Each Other And Why They Need Each Other to Survive

Book by Bill Pfleging and Minda Zetlin 

Technology and business pros (“geeks” and “suits”, respectively, in this book) often find working together to be a challenge. Bill Pfleging, self-proclaimed geek, and Minda Zetlin, representing the suits, have written this insightful book to help you understand the other side.

As the use of technology continues to proliferate, you’ll find that knowing how to close the gap between the two worlds is a critical skill.

First, seek to understand
In this book, you’ll find a specific example of Steven Covey’s general principle – “seek first to understand” – as discussed in The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People. The authors assert that geeks like to solve problems, while suits rely on influencing people. Through numerous examples, you’ll come to understand the other side, so they can understand you.

Then, learn to value
Suits view technology as a tool to accomplish their goals; geeks see technology as a “living, breathing thing.” These diverse points-of-view strengthen your organization.

Whether you’re a geek or a suit, you’ll find practical suggestions to help you learn to value the complementary skill sets of your co-workers. That’s a skill that will help you advance in your career.

Final note
While this book reports to be about geeks and suits, it’s really a book about working with people who think differently than you. If you want to improve your ability to communicate with others, we think you’ll find this book useful.