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Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed

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Buy Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed at Amazon.co.uk or Amazon.com

Category: Business and Finance
Rating: 5/5
Reviewer: Sue Magee
Reviewed by Sue Magee
Summary: A brief look at twelve ways that you can further your career. You might want to look at some areas in more depth, but I can't think of a better place to start.
Buy? Yes Borrow? Yes
Pages: 192 Date: January 2020
Publisher: Piatkus
External links: Author's website
ISBN: 978-0349424927

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Do you have a guaranteed and more-than-adequate income which will last the rest of your life? Do you have no need to work, either for income or fulfilment? If you even hesitate over either of those questions then you really ought to read Life's Work': 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career. If you're not yet in work or considering that you might need to make some changes then this is the book you need. James Reed is the chairman and chief executive of REED, Britain's biggest and best-known name in the recruitment industry. Who better to give you the advice you need?

You might think that the twelve proven ways will be quite straightforward, such as 'dress smartly for interviews', or 'turn up in good time', but there's actually a great deal more depth to the book than that. We begin with the suggestion that we should all look in the mirror - or get to know yourself. Find out what you really want from your working life. As with each of the proven ways we finish the chapter with a brief summary of what has been covered and a couple of Just Asking points designed to make you think about what you've read.

You might be surprised to be advised to go to parties. It's not a suggestion that you indulge in nights of drunken revelry but rather than you network, if only to keep up with what's happening within your industry. As Reed says You never know when you're about to meet the person who might change your life. Similarly Poohsticks is not encouragement to spend time throwing sticks in the river, but rather that you should be looking for fast-flowing water - placing yourself in fast-growing industries.

We all have both good and bad habits (go on, admit it...) and Reed encourages us to make changes, and good habits can be as simple as being cheerful. Here at Bookbag we're not big on targets, the subject of the next chapter, but I felt a lot better about them when I converted them to goals. We all need something to aim for!

I was initially a little stunned by the idea of thinking in days and decades: I'm the person who has a plan for everything, but it really does make sense. Plan for your immediate future, but have long term goals. Reed even tells us how to frame our goals as the decades go by. Be Powerful, be Prepared sounded more akin to my own beliefs and it does allow you to take advantage of situations as they arise. Reed is strong on preparing for job interviews, presentations and meetings.

I've experience in recruiting and being recruited, and I've always found that one of the most impressive points about any candidate is their work ethic. Reed stresses that he doesn't mean that the candidate will work long hours, but rather that they'll be committed to their employer and have its best interests at heart. To me a good and obvious work ethic trumps any number of paper qualifications.

Reed encourages people to ask for help - he sees failure to ask for it as a weakness - and people generally like to be asked to help. They're flattered. He stresses that it's also important to be helpful. I liked his idea of finding a boss you can learn from too: looking back through my working life the best times were when I was working for someone who encouraged me to broaden my knowledge. It's worth remembering that you're being paid to learn, too!

The book is an easy read, with plenty of anecdotes to illustrate the points made, but with enough of an edge to persuade you to think a little more deeply. I'll be encouraging my grandchildren to read - and to keep going back to points as they have relevance in their lives. I'd like to thank the publishers for sending a copy to the Bookbag.

Regard the book as an introduction and look at areas where you feel that you need to do more work and then explore further. So far as habits are concerned, I've found a reasonably foolproof way to make changes in Tiny Habits: The Small Changes That Change Everything by B J Fogg. And if you're looking for help preparing for that all important interview you can't do better than Reed's own Why You? 101 Interview Questions You'll Never Fear Again.

Why You? 101 Interview Questions You'll Never Fear Again by James Reed

Buy Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed at Amazon.co.uk


Buy Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed at Amazon You can read more book reviews or buy Life's Work: 12 Proven Ways to Fast-Track Your Career by James Reed at Amazon.com.

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