Thursday, October 31, 2013

Promote Yourself by Dan Schawbel

Happy Halloween everyone! I don't really celebrate this holiday (well, Chinese and not living in a Western Country and all that), but if you want something cute to fawn over, have a look at this Sushi Candy that I found! (Well, I said I don't celebrate, but I never object to eating food(; ). And since it's Halloween, what is scarier than a scary story? Finding a job! (Ok, this only applies to working people/people about to enter the workfore). So in its own strange way (in my own strange mind, with my own strange logic), this is an appropriate book to review.

Promote Yourself is supposed to help you against the scariest of all things - stuck in a dead-end job you hate. This book is supposed to teach you how to make sure you advance up the career ladder and cinch/create that dream job of yours. The book is going to teach you things like what managers look for when they want to promote people, how to turn your passion into a new position, starting your own business while on the job and many many other things.

What interested me the most was actually Chapter Five "Gain Visibility without Being Known as a Self-Promotional Jerk". The book makes a difference between self-promotion and bragging, with the later being the one that annoys everyone. I probably learnt the most from this chapter because it's always felt weird for me to claim attention to myself. And if you're wondering what the big idea is, it's actually quite simple - make everything how you can help others, not about what you can do and how awesome you are. Simple advice, but I think actually doing this will be challenging.

The only thing that I didn't really like was the America-centric stance of the book. Section in question:

"Remember those 300, 000-jobs-per-year gap I mentioned just a second ago - all those jobs are going overseas. The news only gets worse ... [news about how India and China are going to become huge].... By then, the U.S. will have been out of first place for thirty years."
As someone who isn't living in the US, that's good news for me (assuming that some of the jobs head my way. But I suppose that if you're living in America or want to work in America, this will be scary news for you (BOO!). But because of that, I'm not sure specific the working environment in the book is to America - but if all companies are about the same worldwide, then you have no worries.

I think most of us know that the economy is really bad right now. Well, since I'm in Japan, it's been bad for the past ten plus years, but you get the point. If you're worried about how you're going to get a job - this is probably the book for you. Even if you don't work in America.

Disclaimer: I got this book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for a free and honest review.

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