MBA Mommy

Part MBA, Part MRS, Part MOM…..All ME

Posts Tagged ‘books’

Shut Up About Your Perfect Kid

Posted by mbamommy on March 4, 2012

I somehow have never mentioned this book on this blog. And, I’m a little baffled as to how that happened. Because I really should have. I mean, really really really should have.

My sis-in-law sent me this book about a year ago. It’s written by two (VERY funny) sisters who are raising special needs daughters. One daughter has asperger’s syndrome and one has bipolar disorder. Neither of which one would expect to be very funny topics. And, frankly, if I had read this book when Z was first diagnosed, I may not have found as much humor in it. I think you need to be at a certain comfort level with the diagnosis and your ‘new’ life to truly appreciate it.

But I read it at the perfect time. And, it made me cry from laughing so much. From their description of an IEP meeting to chatting with mom’s of “perfect” kids, it was perfect. Light hearted, informational and real. I totally wanted to meet these women and have SEVERAL glasses of wine with them. 🙂

And then I found out that it’s not just a book. That there’s a whole Imperfect Movement out there. There’s a Facebook page. There’s tweets (@shutupabout). And there are lots and lots of parents of special kiddos joining together in support of one another, embracing their (our) own imperfect-ness and our children’s.

And then….in all their glorious imperfect-ness, these “Shut Up Sisters”, Patty & Gina, didn’t update their blog enough. And they decided they needed to let their imperfect readers/followers have a voice. And they asked if anyone wanted to be a guest blogger.

Both of my hands shot up immediately. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE, let me be a guest blogger!

And, guess what? They did.

My readership has skyrocketed. My ego has been inflated. My soul has been humbled. And, my writer’s block has been lifted.

So, thank you, Patty & Gina, for everything you do.

And, for those of you interested, BUY THEIR BOOK! (or borrow it from me!) It’s awesome!!!

Posted in ASPERGER'S, AUTISM, MOM | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

I Love You More….

Posted by mbamommy on May 5, 2010

As a follow up to My Recent Epiphany, I wanted to share my thoughts on Jeanne Bliss’s book, I Love You More Than My Dog.  I should preface this by saying that over the past few weeks, Jeanne and I have struck up a partnership and I will be working for her on a part-time basis once my tenure at BBI is done (more to come on that…I promise).  So, as part of my “homework” assignment on getting up to speed on all things CCO, customer service and CustomerBLISS, I was anxious to start reading.

First of all, it’s a super easy read.  For all of you MBA’s out there, you know the difference between learning from a textbook and a case study.  My textbooks were always full of highlighted sentences that I never took the time to go back and review later.  Meanwhile, most of the case studies I read in b-school still live in my brain.  One of the many reasons why I LUV SWA so much is because their decision to start flying in and out of BWI was the first case study I read in my Corporate Strategy class.

But, I digress.  Jeanne presents the 5 decisions Beloved Companies make in easily digestible, approachable sections.  She explains each on a high level and then gives a quick case study example.  She even gets a little personal and shares some of her personal Beloved Company experiences.  Here’s the best part.  She doesn’t tell you how to do it.  She gives you the questions to ask yourself/your company so you can show yourself .  Talk about giving a man a fishing pole, right?

I think that’s the right way to approach the challenge of becoming a Beloved Company.  No two companies are the same, so no two solutions will be the same.  Jeanne is able to get past all those differences and get to the root of how companies create ‘raving fans’.   Frankly, the one thing that resonated a lot with me throughout all of her example companies is that the folks running them seem like they’re genuinely good.  And, if you’re genuinely good in your personal life, that should carry into your professional life.  That, and guts.  It takes guts to take a step back and ask the tough questions.  And then to follow through.

To take that a step further, I read an interesting blog post yesterday from All In One Marketing called “The Open Chair“.  She recommends that companies keep an “open chair” at their strategy meetings.  This chair could be filled by either an outside consultant or an internal employee who understands the challenge but can also provide an outside/clear perspective.  This person would be able to help you ask…and answer…the tough questions.

Think about it, the best advice you’ll ever get is from an unbiased outsider who has your best interests in mind.  That’s why we lean on our girlfriend’s when we have disagreements with our husbands or our husbands when we have disagreements with our bosses.  It’s the same concept.

Back to the book.

Simply put, it’s a good, quick read.  It provides some great tools to get the conversation started.  Go.  Buy it.  Read it.  Apply it.

Posted in MBA, ME | Tagged: , , , , | 2 Comments »

My recent epiphany

Posted by mbamommy on March 31, 2010

Have you ever heard of the job title “Chief Customer Officer“?  I have only recently and it’s been a complete game changer for me.  No more do I aspire to be a CMO….I want to be a CCO.

The idea behind a CCO is to truly put your customers first in everything a company does: customer service, sales, account management, product development, operations, accounting, finance, HR, marketing, PR, R&D, etc etc.  Instead of just *saying* you’re customer-centric, this role is responsible for *creating* customer-centricity.  It’s perfect and is in line with everything I believe in and have blogged about.  Treat your customers well, treat your employees well, set up your company to acknowledge the importance of your customer and you will succeed.

And, here’s my new role model: Jeanne Bliss.  Every single professional mentor I’ve ever looked up to has been a woman and they all pale in comparison to Ms. Bliss.  This is as close to “girl love” (think Scrubs….”guy love“) as I’ve ever gotten.

I just ordered her two books, “Chief Customer Officer” and “I Love You More Than My Dog” and cannot WAIT to start reading.  Kind of makes me feel weak in the knees.

Posted in MBA, ME | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

My life, the book

Posted by mbamommy on May 21, 2009

You know how everyone talks about how their life sometimes feels like a sit-com?  Well, I can’t say that happens to me very frequently.  But, I can say that recently, I feel like every book I read is either written for or by me. 

For example: The Middle Place, by Kelly Corrigan, is about a mother of 2 young children who finds out she has breast cancer.  Granted, I don’t have breast cancer (although, as I was reading the other night, I decided to do an impromptu self-exam) but, I am in what she calls “The Middle Place”, where you’re a Mom and Child all rolled into one.  She talks about being a Venn Diagram where you’re the only player.  I was laughing out loud when she described it because it’s EXACTLY where I am right now.  I have 2 little ones who I love to brag about to their grandparents.  And, in the same conversation, I’m bragging about a recent run or job interview I rocked.  I never quite thought about it in that way before but it’s true.  Thank goodness my parents are still around…..and thank goodness I’m a parent myself.  One other comment about Ms. Corrigan’s book: I am completely in love with her father – what a character!

Another example: The Last Lecture, by Jeffrey Zaslow & Randy Pausch.  If you haven’t read this book, do it.  Seriously.  The world lost an amazing teacher when Mr. Pausch passed away and my heart goes out to his family.  I guess the only silver lining about his tragic death is that now everyone can learn from him.  So, why do I feel like this book was written for me?  Well, I’m currently looking for a job (as I’ve mentioned before) and I’ve been getting enormously discouraged by the lack of response I (haven’t) been getting.  It’s so tough out there and companies who are actually hiring really have the pick of the litter.  Not that I think I’m a runt but I find myself needing to be extremely aggressive in pushing my way through the bigger puppies to get some attention. 

But, I digress.  Mr. Pausch repeatedly talks about going after your dreams, going above and beyond to make yourself visible and not taking no for an answer.  I was reading the book in bed the other night, completely discouraged with my job search…..and realized I wasn’t doing all of that.  The next morning I had a new found energy and determination to really push for that dream job I applied for.  Now, I haven’t gotten the job yet, BUT, I did finally get someone on the phone who let me know that my initial application had never been received and suggested I re-apply.  If I hadn’t been so determined, I would’ve never known that and just assumed they didn’t see the fit the way I do.  The end result is TBD but at least I can say I’ve done everything I can.  At least I can take some of the power back.

Finally, I also recently read Unaccustomed Earth, by Jhumpa Lahiri.  It’s a collection of short stories with a recurring theme of Indian-American families living (mostly) in the Boston area and the impact living in a different country and culture has on their families – both positive and negative.  Now, I’m not Bengali but I don’t think that’s important.  Each story has bittersweet characters and you can really feel their heartaches and triumphs.  The story in particular that affected me was the title and first story.  It’s about a young mother, pregnant with #2 who loses her Mother, quits her job and moves to a new city to follow her husband’s career.  Again, not all of that’s the same as me, thankfully, my mother is still alive.  BUT, the way Ms. Lahiri describes the isolation this young mother feels, the challenges she faces in her relationship with her husband, her need for family to be there when they’re not and her mixed emotions about being a working Mom vs a SAHM all rang true for me.  Another story, A Choice of Accommodations, talks about a couple with 2 young children who go away for a romantic weekend only to have the weekend fall on its face due to the reality of being a long-term married couple with kids (ie, they’d rather sleep than anything else).

Looking back on that last paragraph, you’re probably thinking “That book is depressing…..and MBA Mommy’s got some issues.”  But, that’s not the case.  In the first story I mentioned, it ends with the young mother rekindling a strained relationship with her father and the beginnings of a beautiful relationship between grandfather and grandson.  In the second story, the couple re-connects in a most unusual location, but realize they both still love each other.  As I said before, the book was bittersweet and I loved that none of the stories ever really finished – it was like you saw a snippet of these people’s lives and then had to wonder what happens next.  I’m guessing that each character goes on with their lives, struggles when they have to, celebrates when they can and lives to the best of their ability.

So…, I don’t have breast cancer…, I don’t have pancreatic cancer….and no, I’m not Bengalese.  But, I did see myself in these stories.  I guess that’s the sign of a good read.  And, that no matter who you are or what you’re experiencing, you’re not alone.

Posted in MBA, ME, MOM, MRS | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

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