Style

Grey Pleated Skirt Edit

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When I started this blog, I did not think I would ever make a Style post, let alone dedicate a whole category to Style. But I have been surprised by the interest in my work outfits, which I occasionally post in Instagram stories.

I have no authority on style; far from having a fashion degree, I do not even subscribe to fashion magazines or follow anything going on in the fashion world.

That said, I do love styling for work because when I look good, I feel significantly more confident and empowered – and that is critical when you work in an industry dominated by men in suits.

So, thanks to everyone’s messages about making Style part of my blog and Instagram, I will be sharing at least one Style post a month (more if there is interest). 🙂

Without further ado, let me show you my outfit of the day.

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This was totally candid, I promise. But seriously, how stunning is the peeking pearl jewelry? I love adding such intricate details to my style.

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Fall officially started last weekend, however, trees in Amsterdam are yet to turn an exquisite burnt orange. Today, it is 20 degrees and sunny – perfect for pulling out my new grey pleated skirt. I have paired it with a plain white top, which is a thick knit and a pair of black edgy slingback heels. I completed the outfit with a deep berry & black coat. My bag is a muted grey and I use it pretty much on a daily basis for work.

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Those heels are surprisingly comfortable for their height, FYI. I survived wearing them to my team’s Away Day last week.

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Well, that is about it for today’s outfit. I hope you liked the pairings I have made for my Monday outfit! Please do share your feedback in terms of what you would like to see. Would a post about my key fall pieces be of interest? Let me know!

And lastly, a h u g e shout out to my husband for photographing the outfit and bearing with my lack of modelling skills. Nonetheless, I think he brought out the best in me, like always. 🙂

Here is a selfie at the end of what we thought was a pretty good first shoot!

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D E T A I L S

Boss Pleated Skirt

Reiss Heels

Furla Handbag

Lipstick Mac

Coat 

Top

*Both the top and coat are oldies in my wardrobe that are no longer sold, so I have included links to similar items.
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Career

What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School: Book Review

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Like an astute mentor, What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School details vivid business situations to help us get a grip over the “real world.” In this master piece of sorts, Mark H. McCormack , the legend who birthed the sports management and marketing industries, teaches us how to use “people sense” in negotiation, time management, and reading ourselves and others.

The theme of What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School is that even graduates of the most esteemed business school in the world often do not have “people sense,” which is critical to successfully navigating business situations aka “people situations.” In his book, McCormack anecdotes the lack of people sense he observed in Harvard graduates, as well as successful business executives in various industries during his career. In the light of McCormack’s experience, What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School intends to fill the gap between the curriculum of prestigious business schools and street knowledge, and it does that with reason and eloquence.

I believe the strength of the book rests in its simple, clear, and straight forward writing. McCormack is not afraid to call bullshit what it is, so it may at times appear harsh, when really it is just honest. The quote below from P, 42 of the 2014 edition published by Profile Books Ltd in London gives a taste of McCormack’s honesty.

The Most Important Personal Asset in Business

Obviously, the real answer is common sense. But if you don’t have it already, you probably never will, and there’s nothing I can say here that is going to change that.

More than a few times, my husband caught me smiling like an idiot while reading this book – I would credit that to McCormack’s writing and storytelling style.

On the flip side, the book’s weakness lies in its lack of placement in the present time. As in, it was published in 1984, which means it could do with an edit of how current technology affects “people sense” and “people situations” – both positively and adversely. One example that stood out to me is the criticism of visual aids on P, 130. In today’s age, a Snapchat, YouTube, or Instagram guru could seriously challenge McCormack on his following observation.

I’ve never seen a bad idea sold because of great visual aids, and I’ve never seen a good idea good unsold because of lack of visual aids.

What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School is divided into three parts: People, Sales and Negotiation and Running a Business. Personally, I found the first part to be the most relevant to my everyday job responsibilities and short term career goals. Sales and Negotiation also packs a punch, but Running a Business resonates the least with me. Nonetheless, it is an insightful read and a great resource for someone entertaining the idea of starting an entrepreneurial venture.

Some ideas presented in the book are fundamental in navigating the first five years of one’s career, that is why it could be mandatory reading in college. McCormack presents most of his ideas alongside concrete and insightful examples, which allowed me to recall and reflect on similar situations I have come across at work and in social gatherings. Through his vivid writing, McCormack compels his reader to reflect on daily business and social communications, and learn from them. Bonus: he does that without trying too hard.

Some of the concepts that stayed with me are: don’t be a “time thief,” focus on the “listen talk ratio,” observe “fringe times,” avoid “business immaturity,” get over the “love-me-for-myself-syndrome,” “find a star and make them a friend,” “negotiate backwards,” and “turn crisis into opportunity.” All these ideas were supported by examples that are truly sharp and thoughtful, but lengthy to be quoted in this post.

All in all, I would give What They Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School a 4.6/5, and I would definitely recommend young adults to read (and understand) this book. After reading, not only will you start identifying crucial “people situations” around yourself – whether you’re working in a F100 company or sitting in an undergraduate gender studies class – you also will begin applying “people sense” to become the best version of yourself. It truly is a win-win.

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